A week ago, I saw Lady Gaga in concert with some of my best girlfriends. We got all dressed up in wigs and glitter and were excited for a fun night at the Staples Center in L.A. The show was amazing--Lady Gaga is quite an entertainer. She's extremely talented (in my opinion) and the production was incredible. But it wasn't the yummy dinner or the show or the awesome fake eyelashes or even my wonderful friends that I liked most about the night. I liked that the show, that Lady Gaga, got me thinking...
This concert was a worship experience. The power that music has to move you and create an intense emotional experience is undeniable. That's why music is such a powerful way that Christians connect with the heart of God. I noticed a similar connection at this concert. Lady Gaga said things from the stage like, "Jesus loves everyone," "love yourself," "be who you are," and "you were born this way." And many of her fans just drank up her words and used them to validate their identities and lifestyles. Fans dressed up exactly like her--they wanted to be her. "Paws up!" she would demand, and hands went up...the crowd did whatever she told them.
The interesting thing is that many of the things she said were true...almost. Yeah, be yourself, but how do you know who you are if you don't know who your creator is? Yes, Jesus loves everyone and accepts everyone, but he does not approve of everything that we do. Lady Gaga's message seemed innocent enough, but the danger under the sequined, interesting package that it's wrapped in is that it's more confusing than it is clear. And to talk about Jesus while you're covered in fake blood, dropping eff bombs, and gyrating with your backup dancers is creating a context that, no matter what you say, mocks him.
During the show (which, again, I did enjoy), I asked God to help me sort out my thoughts on things. And I don't know if this next thought came from him, or from me, but right after asking that, the next thought that popped into my head was "God loves her."
God loves Lady Gaga. He sent his son, Jesus Christ, to die for her sins. Mocking Christ is her way of dealing with pain in her life that she doesn't know what to do with. We make fun of the things that we're secretly uncomfortale with, after all; mocking is a way of coping. I haven't done any research on this woman, but I am convinced that she is afraid of, or has been hurt by, the church or something/someone associated with it. People are afraid of her weird antics, frightening costumes, and bloody performances, but I think calling her demon-possessed or the anti-Christ (yep, I've heard these things) is giving her too much credit! Really, I think they are afraid of the affluence and influence that she has that allow her to proclaim her messages of distorted truth. It's her platform of power that they're afraid of. If we looked a little closer, I think we would see a misguided and misled girl trying to make a difference in this world in a way that she knows how, and trying to feel significant and loved. She's a wounded, lost little 25-year-old girl. And weren't we all lost at one point? Isn't that why we all need the grace and wisdom and hope of Christ?
God loves Lady Gaga...his heart breaks for her. And it sounds weird to say, but mine kind of does, too.