Above all else, guard your heart,Proverbs 4:23
for everything you do flows from it.
First things first, I had a very weird idea about what “guarding your heart” entailed. It sounded so abstract and out of reach. One would think a rib-cage and sternum were enough to guard the heart, clearly that wasn’t it chief.
Guarding your heart is not just about walking away from toxic friendships and people, it is also about every single other thing you expose yourself to:
- the things you watch on TV,
- the books you read
- the music you listen to.
I have a friend who covered her eyes and ears or walked out of the room if what was on the screen didn’t align with her brand. Did I think that was a bit much? Yes, but now I finally understand where she was coming from. In this post I’ll be putting much emphasis on the songs we listen to.
The last thing before I get into the crux of this post: there is a lot of controversy about music. Some Christians, like myself not too long ago, defend celebrities more than they defend the gospel. “What so and so meant when they said this was–“
How powerful is music?
Am I the only one who scrolls through comments on YouTube as I listen to songs? People in the comment section talk about:
- how they felt the presence of God as Abbey Ojomu, Theophilus Sunday or Elevation Worship was playing.
- some recount how they broke down into tears,
- how those were the moments when they rededicated their lives to Christ
- some even testify about how some songs sent them into hours of earnest prayer.
The next question I ask myself is, what am I ushering into my life when I am not singing songs or listening to songs that have a positive life-giving message?
It is time for a story. The year is 2019 and I have just made the decision not to listen to any music that promotes anything that is negative. However, I was a stan for a certain bands and artists whose music had undertones of negativity, but I defended them.
“Their biography says they believe in God… the music isn’t bad… it is just art…they are just raising awareness on mental health issues”
A turning point
Looking back, a lot of those artists romanticized suffering, anxiety, depression, suicide and the like. What was I doing listening to “Darkness to me is only water to the sea”? Let us not lie to each other, 2020 has been a tough year, but for me, last year was SOMETHING ELSE. I had really negative thoughts and I had no idea where they spawned from. My life already wasn’t a walk in the park but listening to that music sent me to the valley of the shadow of death.
In the middle of the year I had a dream and one of the bands I was a huge fan of appeared. The sky was red and it was quite dark, they walked through the security wall and marched towards my bedroom window like they were possessed. I did not see the correlation at the time and continued listening to their music.
What happened next?
My earphones were stolen, then my sister bought me new ones. One day they latched onto a door handle and one stopped working. Relevance? I only listen to music while I am wearing earphones, anything other than that is noise pollution. When one stops working? Throw the whole pair away.
Eventually I got the message, there was clearly something that was altered as I was listening to that music and singing along to it.
How is it that in your right state of mind you can never confess that you are a liability but when there is a good beat and some vocals suddenly you can say “I’m a liability, I’m a liability”? The aesthetic does not take away the impact of those words.
Key take away
You are what you eat. If you are ingesting content that promotes certain behavior or attitudes, you will begin projecting what is in your system wherever you go.
I have made a playlist on YouTube, Wholesome Sounds, click here for the link.
Did you know that it takes about 15 years for an avocado tree to start producing fruit? With that being said, please subscribe to my channel while you’re at it. There is no content at the moment but like an avocado we’ll get there one day.