Okay, that is not completely true. There are cases where I’m in a car with someone who has control of the radio, or I’m in a public place and secular music is playing in the background. There are even some YouTuber’s that I listen to that largely don’t cover Christian songs. It might be a better title to say, “Why I choose to mostly listen to Christian Music?” It made you want to read the article though, didn’t it?
I like music with a message I can stand behind. Sure, there are songs that are aesthetically pleasing to the ears and some secular songs even have a good message, but some, if you truly listen to the words they don’t really amount to anything worth listening to.
Have you heard the saying, “The eyes are the window to the soul”? The saying can be attributed to many sources and the origin can be debated, however, the concept is there in Matthew 6: 22-23 which says, “Your eye is a lamp that provides light to the body. When your eye is good, your whole body is filled with light. But when your eye is bad, your whole body is filled with darkness. And if the light you think you have is actually darkness, how deep that darkness is!”(NLT)
I know, the verse is talking about the eyes, but the ears are an input source too. They are a way to get information into the body and if we are not careful we can dwell on negative, hurtful, and even demeaning things. Voltaire’s Candide even says the soul is revealed in ones face. This could be conceived to be the eyes, ears, nose, and mouth.
Have you ever been talking to someone and you could tell that they were having a bad day, lost in thought, or not interested? Your notion for how they are feeling can come from facial expressions, but it can also come from their eyes. If someone has something to hide, then they will tend to divert their eyes from making eye contact.
Scientists from Orebro University in Sweden have found in a case study of 428 volunteers that there is an interesting relationship between the eye and someone’s personality. Here is an excerpt from one article I read:
“Their findings showed those with denselypacked crypts are more warmhearted, tender, trusting, and likely to sympathise with others. In comparison, those with more contraction furrows were more neurotic, impulsive and likely to give way to cravings.”
Correlation may not imply causation but there seems to appear that eye detail and a person’s character is caused by the same thing—a gene known as PAX6.
It is important to take care of your heart, that is your emotional health, and a good way to do that is to watch what you listen to and what you see. Though Jesus is speaking of eating without washing your hands first the principle still remains true with the things that we allow to enter our lives. Matthew 15:11 says,
“What goes into someone’s mouth does not defile them, but what comes out of their mouth, that is what defiles them.” Jesus explains this further in verses 17-20 of the same chapter, “Don’t you see that whatever enters the mouth goes into the stomach and then out of the body? But the things that come out of a person’s mouth come from the heart, and these defile them. For out of the heart come evil thoughts—murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false testimony, slander. These are what defile a person; but eating with unwashed hands does not defile them.” (NIV)
Take care of your emotional health by putting a check on your thoughts—what you hear, and what you see. If you have a problem with depression, anxiety, anger, or lust; then, you should probably stay away from certain things, images, or sounds; you might regret it later and the very thing that you are struggling against may start to grow within you. If you watch, or listen, to something that uses coarse language, innuendos, or depicts the opposite sex as objects you can almost assuredly see what will take root and grow in your life.
A forest fire doesn’t begin at once. It takes a spark to start the uncontrollable blaze. Paul mentions it in a couple of places (Galatians 5:9; 1 Corinthians 5:6) that a little yeast leavens the whole batch of dough. If you start to listen to one song, or one line of thinking, that contains questionable material, then it won’t be long before the seed of thought will spread to your whole self and it will be externally evident by what you say. What goes in must come out whether for good or bad.
I’m not saying that all secular music is bad. As I started out this article, I mentioned I listen to music that does not identify as Christian on occasion. The music in my life has to meet three criteria.
- It needs to be clean.
- It needs to have a strong message that I can follow and stand behind.
- I’m not a robot; it needs to sound good too.
For me, Christian music happens to fit all three categories.
In conclusion, you don’t have to stop listening to secular music; instead, be mindful of what you are actually listening to and how it might be affecting you spiritually, emotionally, and possibly even physically. I’ll end on a note from Paul, “Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.” (Philippians 4:8, ESV)
Peace, love, and Christ ‘cause you know he died for you!