Monday, January 29, 2007

Great Missional Outreach: House Concert with Liz Bowater and the Spares

This past Friday night, my friend John Daley (who worships at Covenant-First) hosted a house concert at his loft apartment. He brought down The Spares from Chicago, and had local singer/songwriter Liz Bowater as an opener. His loft could easily fit around 100 people comfortably, and by my estimate there were about 60 in attendance.

It was a great show. Liz has some terriffic songs that brim over with a kind of brooding transcendence. They were songs that I found to be nourishing -- a little melancholy, but nourishing. Kind of like a Shakespearian Romance -- the Tempest or the Winter's Tale -- there's an honest understanding of pain and hurt and suffering -- but on the other side of the suffering there is a view of redemption, reconciliation, and hope. Meanwhile The Spares have kind of alt country sound -- lots of great energy and fire and versatility in their work.

Now here's the thing -- John, our host, invited these musicians because they're all Christians. They're not "christian musicians" in the sense of playing gospel music all the time -- but they're musicians who happen to be Christians, and they're not ashamed of having their faith worked into their songs. Take note of this piece by Liz -- it speaks of dying -- but finding peace in glory. It's very different from the nihilism of hardcore rock and the bubblegum cliche of Christian pop. Meanwhile, The Spares, right in the middle of the show, broke into an 18th century hymn.

John designed this event as an opportunity for his Christian friends and his non-christian friends to rub shoulders and interact with each other. There were about 5 or 6 of us from Covenant-First there -- and several other churches and house churches represented. Lots of good mingling and conversation going on.

And he didn't even need an Evangelism committee to tell him to do it......

Soli Deo Gloria