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We recently received an email from a good friend who stated: "I believe that the friendly competition should be at best, vague and overshadowed, by the stuff we can actually learn from one another." (Stephan Ashton-BigPlaidGospel). Sure, we want to gain fans and recognition in return for our efforts! Yet, that's not really going to benefit us nearly as much as will helping and learning from one another. We, who strive to maintain Christ-like motivations, must endeavor to preserve our humility and concentrate on our "mission" of service. Let's take it one step further... We, the members of "Uturnband", chose to place ourselves under the "Rock" genre on ReverbNation, instead of the "Christian/Gospel" heading. The decision was, in fact, quite difficult for us to make. Did we want to "limit" ourselves by taking on the "Christian/Gospel" label, which really didn't seem to fit us that well, or place ourselves among thousands and thousands of other Rock artists, thereby somewhat relinquishing our mission? Are we not still "different" from them, even though we are among them? We now find ourselves ranked #3 for our area in the "Rock" genre, and are wondering how this happened. We really weren't concerned with rankings at first, yet we found ourselves becoming more aware of them when we learned that some of our "fans" had actually considered disassociating themselves with us! Due to some of our emails, containing Bible quotations and promoting Christian values, they were offended, therefore they "opted out" from our emails and even our fan base that they had joined. What do we do about that? Are we suddenly to consider compromising our real mission because of it? Jesus certainly never concerned himself with his "image" or popularity. He was concerned only with the mission he was given by God, his Father. These days, it's getting harder and harder to distinguish Christian artists from secular ones. "Image", sales, and popularity, in many cases, are taking precedence over the mission that God has given us! We must be careful not to get "caught-up" in the same thinking as the world. Yet, for most of us Rock or Christian Music artists, we still need to sell our work to be able to continue our mission. We're not necessarily trying to condemn or judge ourselves or anyone else. Only God has that right. Still, the point seems valid enough for some internal evaluation by each of us. As artists, like in any other type of work, we use tools to cultivate and reap our harvest. Some would say that image and popularity are other forms of those work tools, although unique to the music industry... That they inevitably help us to reap a greater harvest for God. In many cases, that's probably true, but not in all. What do you think?
We're so pleased to have been a part of the well-planned benefit held this past Sunday, June 13th at First Baptist Church Of Stoneville, for 22-month old Sophie Mabe! The event was a huge success, raising over $26,000.00 for Sophie's medical expenses, despite the thunderstorms! Sophie is fighting a form of cancer called Neuroblastoma, and will now be able to receive special treatments only available in New York!
If you like music, you've heard of Eric Clapton. Each year he hosts the "Crossroads" guitar festival. Wouldn't it be cool for a Christian band to play there? Think of the opportunities... We've entered a contest to win the chance to do it! With your help (Votes), it can happen! Take a few minutes, click on the "vote now" widget, register as a fan, and you can vote for us once each day! Hurry, though, because the chance to vote ends June 12th! Thanks for the support!