Bono, the lead singer of the rock band U2, is suspicious of Christians.
"...because of this lack of realism" Bono said in an interview with Eugene Peterson and David Taylor about the book of Psalms. He continued, "I’d love to see more of that [realism] in art and in life and in music."
I wonder if Bono might say the same thing about today's preaching?
Might we preach with the same honesty about life that the Psalms reflect? It seems to me that the world around us needs more of that type of honesty.
“I find a lot of dishonesty in Christian art." says Bono, "It’s a shame because these are a people who are vulnerable to God in a good way...open. I would love if this conversation would inspire those who are writing these beautiful voices, these beautiful gospel songs…Write a song about their bad marriage. Write a song about how they’re pissed off at the government because that’s what God wants from you…the truth…and that truthfulness…the truth will set you free…that truthfulness will blow things apart."
Preaching is art. There is a craft to great preaching that expresses God's Word in a way to draws people closer to Christ. We need more honest, Christ-centered preaching today.
In the wake of yet another tragic terrorism attack, this time in Nice, France, two quotes from the interview stand out for me. David Taylor asks the two men about responding to the violence in our world and the violence in our own hearts. Here's how Bono and Peterson respond,
Eugene Peterson: We need to find a way to cuss without cussing and the imprecatory psalms certainly do that. They lay it out…We’ve got to have some way, in context, the Bible, to tell people how mad we are.
Bono: I have no problem with the Old Testament. I don’t see God as a violent God, but I think the world is a violent place and it does reflect that…it is real and in a way I kind of prefer it to the airy fairy stuff where we don’t get real.
I encourage you to watch the interview in it's entirety and see how it applies to your preaching and leadership as a pastor. Watch the entire interview here