Christians Can't Clap

When I was a student at BYU I constantly attended musicals, plays, concerts, etc. in the HFAC on campus. Not only were the events super cheap they were a great thing I could do solo or with friends to break the monotony of schoolwork. I also dated a bass player in the symphony so that helped. Since I have been a graduate student I have not had the time or money to attend cultural events at Lisner auditorium on GW's campus. That is not to say I have not attended events elsewhere. I have seen a few plays at the Kennedy Center and last Chinese New Year Steph, Rae and I went to a dance recital at The National Theatre. Despite this, I made a goal that before I graduated I would attend a performance in Lisner.
A few weeks ago I noticed an advertisement for last night's Jars of Clay concert. I have listened to their album Much Afraid for the past ten years so I figure, "What the heck. Might as well." Tickets were super cheap and I landed two seats in the third row from the stage.
Knowing Kim and Rae were probably not Jars fans I invited Joy, pictured above, who was also familiar with their music to come along. It was awesome!
Growing up my brother and I had a Pentecostal babysitter for a time. Her name was Marsha Matheny but her brother and subsequently us, referred to her as "PC," "Porkchop." When my mother worked on Sunday mornings Marsha would take us to her church, cause there was no way in, well you know, that she was setting foot in a LDS church. Not only did Josh and I find their services a little strange sometimes they were downright amusing. I don't mean to demean or belittle other faiths. I know what it feels like and would never want to hurt others' feelings. However, coming from a religious culture where reverence is emphasized instead of clapping, shouting and dancing it is not surprising I would find evangelical services a little foreign.
Purchasing tickets for a Christian rock concert I never anticipated I would find myself seated next to a couple who was drunk of their a--. How lame is that? What kind of person gets loaded for a concert about Jesus? You have to be a serious lush to do something like that. Not only was the guy totally pushing his leg up against mine but he reeked of booze. It was so disgusting I thought I was going to vomit. His girlfriend was so out of it she didn't even notice.

Although Joy and I shared similar beliefs in Christ as our fellow audience members we were definitely outsiders. This was made apparent by the audiences' inability to clap in rhythm to the music. Surprising considering the importance of clapping in evangelical worship services. Another thing we found interesting was the swaying and praying during the rock songs. Jesus taught that we should pray always--yes, but it was a little odd seeing people sway, pray and wave their hands at a rock performance.

Now that I think of it though, I often pray at concerts too. My prayers are a little different as I whisper, "I hope they play x song," to myself. Last night the concert gods were not listening to me because Jars left the stage without singing Hymn. If your ears have never experienced this song you haven't lived. I will try to find it on You Tube and post it later because its divine. Sometimes I feel closer to God when I listen to that song than I do listening to church hymns. The lyrics are really beautiful.

Another beautiful thing about Jars is the band members. Joy and I decided she had dibbs on the lead guitar or keyboardist while I got the lead singer or the other guitarist. They were all married, so really, we couldn't go there but they sure were nice to look at. Their looks coupled with the Superman/Wonderwoman cartoons made the whole thing worth it. Thanks Joy for sacrificing your night to join me on another adventure. I hope its the first of many concerts we'll see together.

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Sherpa said...

I think your post is great. Thanks again!

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