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Take me to church 
I’ll worship like a dog at the shrine of your lies 
I’ll tell you my sins and you can sharpen your knife 
Offer me that deathless death 
Good God, let me give you my life 

Take Me To Church | Hozier

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This is the most important music video I’ve seen in recent memory. It tells the story of a gay couple being targeted and assaulted. (While it is short, not much is shown, and it would probably garner a PG-13 rating, it is stressful to watch and could be triggering.) The video alludes to Russia’s laws and the video-taped targeted violence that occurs there, but LGBTQA people suffer from physical abuse everywhere. That violence is a result of cultures that do not value and love all people, and encourage an ‘us vs. them’ mentality.

As a Christian in America I can tell you, I have wrongly participated in a culture like that. When the Bible is used to ostracize people it is a heartbreaking misuse of its purpose to bring life and love. If Jesus were alive today you can bet he’d have a lesbian best friend and when Christians commented he’d ask ‘who among you can throw the first stone?’

Steve Schallert is Kickstarting a worship album, and you should check it out. He led worship for my Discipleship Training School when I was first in YWAM, so I can tell you from experience that he facilitates some uniquely personal and justice-minded worship. In his own words…

“‘SONGS OF SORROW / SONGS OF HOPE’ is my attempt to reaffirm the place of lamentation within the world of congregational worship music. My prayer is that these songs, songs written all over the world in all kind of circumstances, will be both a comfort and a challenge to communities of faith. A comfort and affirmation for all of us who mourn and struggle and weep and doubt and a challenge for us all to love deeper and wider and more recklessly. These are songs of tension and weakness, songs of compassion and praise and protest… and I invite you to join me as I seek to bring them to life.”

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