Louder Than Screamo


1 John 4:9  “This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him.”

When my husband and I took our son back to school in Nashville after spring break of his freshman year, he was excited about showing us “his town.” But no more than we.  We wanted to see everything that was a part of his new life—-where he ate, slept, and studied.  We wanted to meet his friends and worship at his church. We walked in the rain to eat chicken strips at McDougals and explored every inch of the Belmont campus.

When he asked if we wanted to go to a concert where one of his buddies was playing, we jumped at the chance—even when he warned us we might not “exactly” like the music. After all, he was studying music business and if we could manage to get a closer look at his interest, we were all for it. His friend was playing at Rocketown, a music venue founded by Michael W. Smith. As we walked down the street to the concert, we passed a parking lot attendant who asked if we were going to see Brad. (Country music star Brad Paisley was also playing in Nashville that night). When we said, “No, we’re headed to Rocketown,” he burst out laughing.

“It’s not your mother’s rock and roll anymore,” was his veiled warning.  It wasn’t long before we understood what he meant. In a crowd of over a thousand, Chip and I had to have been the only ones over forty-five years old. I never saw so many piercings and so many tattoos in so many places. When we finally entered the hall, we found our “spot” on an overlooking balcony.  This proved to be a wise decision because as the band started playing, the crowd below emerged into two sections—the shove pit and the thrash pit. I would describe it to you, but my words could never do it justice. I anticipated the music would be loud but I didn’t expect that the lead vocalist didn’t have to know how to sing. Not even one melody line! It turned out to be our initiation into the venue of screamo.

I would do it all over again. Why? Because I love our son and I just wanted to be with him. I think that’s a glimpse of God’s love. He wants to be with us. He wants to walk where we walk, see what we see, hear what we hear. So much so that he left the splendor of heaven to do it.  He subjected himself to all the things we face in order to save us from ourselves so we could be with him forever. Such love says a lot about who we are.

It speaks even louder than screamo.

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