Friday, December 16, 2005

U2 rocks Omaha with atomic force!

U2 came to Omaha last night. Here’s what the review from the Omaha World Herald reported:
“With passion and precision U2 delivered an exhilarating concert that transcended entertainment. During the Irish rock band’s sold-out performance Thursday night at the Qwest Center of Omaha, the arena took on the reverence of a worship service and, at times, the urgency of a human-rights rally. Before a crowd of more than 16,000 fans, the band used its music to convey compassion, hope, tolerance and spirituality during a jubilant two hour and 20-minute performance.”

Wow!!! Doesn’t that say it all. U2 brings a postmodern sensibility to what “faith in the public arena” can feel and look like. Note the words in the review above: reverence, urgency, compassion, hope, tolerance, and spirituality.” Cap that off with the description of a jubilant experience, and you’ve brought together many of the strands of postmodern spirituality. Now, what does this say to the church? What are we seeking to convey?

In the Rolling Stone interview with Bono in November, there’s a striking picture of Bono facing out from the opening pages of the magazine. Against a black background, the face of Bono stares straight ahead, with a white blind-fold around his yes. On the blind-fold are letters for the word “COEXIST”. Only the X is the “Star of David” and the O is from the Muslim crescent moon. The last letter T is in the shape of the Cross of Christianity.
It’s Bono’s postmodern call to spiritual tolerance, to promote world peace. Now, for those of us who are Christians, this is perhaps the supreme spiritual invitation of our time.
Can we as passionate people of faith, live in a world where we respect the Muslim, the Jew, the Buddhist, the Hindu and others?

That’s all for today. I’m driving down to Columbia, Missouri to pick up my two sons from college. I imagine we’ll talk about U2 on the way home. That kind of conversation is something I missed with my own father. So, I connect with Bono’s song “Sometimes You Can’t Make It on Your Own”


At 2:55 PM, Anonymous Josh Widman said...

I was at the U2 concert last Thursday night. It was an experience I'll remember for a long time. What extraordinary musicians. Their performance was flawless -- even Bono singing an opera in Italian. I had no idea he had pipes like that!

I have great respect for the way Bono goes about trying to influence the world. He does it in a fashion of reaching out to everybody and not degrading anybody. (See Hart's note about his meeting with Jesse Helms.)
You see way too many activists on all sides of the political spectrum doing nothing but attacking their opponents, most times very personally. Bono is not that kind of man.

Bono said quite a few times during the show how great he thinks America and Americans are in the amount of aid they have given in the fights against poverty and AIDS. What a refreshing change from most activists who do nothing but blast how selfish America is for not doing more. I think Bono's approach is much more likely to generate an even greater response.

People want help and donate to organizations and nations that are thankful for their help, and to organizations and nations that tell us our help is making a difference. If we're being told our donations aren't making a difference, why would we want to continue to support their effort even if we ultimately support their cause?

Bono's causes are worth supporting. There are many others worth supporting as well, such as the Heifer Project which we Oasis churchmembers were fortunate enough to be able to help this month.

God bless the fight against poverty and the fight against AIDS. God bless Bono.

At 10:41 AM, Anonymous Becky Killion said...

A member of my church has a t-shirt that says COEXIST, using symbols of the major religions. Today she told me that she was wearing it at Curves, where she works out, and a woman asked her about it. The woman told my member that Jesus is everything to her. My member responded, "He's everything for me, too." The other woman wondered how to coexist if the others don't believe in Jesus. My member said to her, "Haven't you heard about free will?" Well, yes, the other woman had. My member said told her that God allows us all to exercise our freewill - even in the ways in which we believe.

When my member told me about this conversation, she was just shaking her head in disbelief at the seeming smallness of this other woman's belief. Then my member said, "I don't think I'll wear this t-shirt to the gym any more."

I hope that she does. Conversations such as these might just bring about change.


Post a Comment

<< Home