In the early 50’s, a new style of music emerged. It was dubbed “Rockabilly Music.” Some of the main singer/songwriters were Carl Perkins, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis, Elvis Presley, and Bill Haley and the Comets. It was a fun type of music, with simple lyrics, toe-tapping rhythms, a new style of electric guitar picking, boogie bass lines and riotous drum beats.
I really like that old Rockabilly music!
The music wasn’t really complicated; generally using only 3 or 4 chords per song. But the musicians were using those few chords and progressions to break out of the old mold, creating a whole new style.
I was born about the time all this was taking place: 1954. Of course I was too young to hear people’s reaction to the new style, but I can just imagine what some of the comments were. People are people, regardless of their age or culture. Most people don’t like change, or they find change extremely difficult. Whether it’s a new technical program or a new style of music, some folks really struggle with change. And I’m sure their comments reflected their struggle.
Christians are like that as well. Especially those who have walked with God for any length of time. Seems like the longer we walk with God, the more set in our ways we become; the more we resent change. Okay, maybe we don’t resent it. We just don’t want any part of it.
Yet change, creating new things, is something God is always doing! Yes, it’s true. He doesn’t change, but He is changing things, changing people. And because of our resistance and struggle with change, we can find ourselves resisting, resenting, His work.
It comes down to a matter of trust, don’t you think? I mean, if we say we really want to do His will, does that mean we’ll do it but only if we understand it, agree with it, or can explain it?
The Lord said, “Look! I am creating new heavens and a new earth, and no one will even think about the old ones anymore.” (Isaiah 65:17 NLT)
That in itself is amazing to me! He’ll create something new, replacing the old, and people won’t complain about it. They “won’t even think about the old ones anymore.” There IS hope for us, eh?
The Lord also told His disciples, “a new commandment I’m giving you…” What? What was the matter with the old?
“Why do we need a new one?”, I could just hear someone say.
Paul wrote to the Colossians: “put on your new nature, getting rid of the old.” We are much more comfortable with the old! We’ve learned how to use the old to our “advantage”. We really like the way it makes us feel at times; how it strokes our ego and pampers our pride. “Put on the new…?!?” Ha! Paul must have been kidding!
The message I’m trying to convey can be summed up using Jesus’ words: “I tell you the truth, unless a kernel of wheat is PLANTED IN THE SOIL AND DIES, it remains alone. But its death will produce many new kernels – a plentiful HARVEST OF NEW LIVES.” (John 12:24 NLT)
In other words, the new things God is desiring to do in and through us don’t really have a chance of growing, or succeeding, if we don’t allow the old to die. We need to release the old and embrace the new.
That’s hard. That’s how it was 60 years ago when Rockabilly Music was introduced; and that’s how it is today.
I really like the old music; the beat, the guitar picking, the simple lyrics. What fun. But it doesn’t really matter if I do or not. It’s only music. It isn’t a matter of life or death.
Not so the Christian walk.
You see, if I’ve really decided to walk with God, my old ways, habits, thoughts, desires…all that stuff needs to yield to the NEW things God is trying to do in my life.
You do, too.
And just think, after a while, we may start enjoying the “music.”