Did you watch Idol Gives Back last night? Did you give? I did, and I hope they surpass last year’s total.
I caught most of the show while I was doing other things. Some of the performances were very good, and Jimmy Kimmel’s assault on Simon was hilarious, although the comments about poking out Paula’s eyes was over the top and crude. (If you saw it, you know whereof I speak; if you didn’t see it, you are better off not knowing.) I was brought to tears with a few of the clips. I was inspired (despite myself) by Brad Pitt. [Note: I read in People Magazine that Pitt and Jolie give over $4 million each year to charity so despite other things about the couple that I cannot respect, I certainly give them kudos for this.]
Dianne asked me: “I’d be interested in hearing what you thought about the finale last night – the final song the Idol contestants sang together. Some Christian number – the name escapes me right now but I thought it was kind of tacky and out of place.”
I had gone into my office, thinking the show was over, and then I heard a choir singing, “Shout to the Lord.” I thought for sure it was an ad for a worship CD or maybe something on the news, but I returned to the living room to make sure. And there they were, the 8 Idol contestants backed up by a large choir.
So what did I think? Well, it was certainly a song I never expected to hear on American Idol, unless another Mandisa comes along. Stunned would be an appropriate description. And what followed was a feeling that it was inappropriate on Idol Gives Back because it wasn’t sung by a group of believers who were truly lifting the Lord’s name in praise. I know there is at least one Christian among the contestants, but I’m sure the majority are not followers of Christ. As for the choir, they could be just entertainers or they could be a Christian choir brought in for the night. Hard to know. They backed up Mariah Carey, too. All the same, it was a little disturbing, seeing Carly wrinkle her nose and belt out some lyrics without any regard evident for what she was saying. (That was just one example.)
On the other hand, Jesus might not be as bothered as I was:
Luke 9:49-50 John answered and said, “Master, we saw someone casting out demons in Your name; and we tried to prevent him because he does not follow along with us.” But Jesus said to him, “Do not hinder him; for he who is not against you is for you.”
And, of course, the Bible tells us that if we don’t rise up in praise of Him, the very rocks will. The show was telecast all over the world. Maybe if even just one person found their heart responding to the truth it was worth it.
In case you don’t know the song, here are those lyrics:
My Jesus, My Savior
Lord there is none like You
All of my days, I want to praise
The wonders of Your mighty love
My Comfort, My Shelter
Tower of refuge and strength
Let every breath, all that I am
Never cease to worship You
Shout to the Lord, all the earth
Let us sing. Power and majesty, praise to the King.
Mountains bow down and the seas will roar
At the sound of Your name
I sing for joy at the work of Your hands
Forever I’ll love you, forever I’ll stand
Nothing compares to the promise I have in YOU!
So yes, it seemed an odd choice from the Idol producers or whoever made the decision. I wonder if it wasn’t uncomfortable for the Idol contestants who aren’t believers to sing those lyrics.
Tell me, what do you think?