Singled Out: My Heart to Fear
It was June of 2011 and we were on a three month tour up and down the coast of the good ol' USA. The tour manager had just informed us that a local church was going to house us for the night, and we were looking forward to finally washing ourselves in a shower rather than a carwash. We arrived at the church around noon after driving all through the night, but didn't know which building to go into. So after 20 minutes of awkwardly roaming around this rather large property, we finally found where we were supposed to be.
So, there we were all settled into our resting quarters, and I decided to take a stroll around the church lot for an hour or so. The foyer was this huge cross-section hallway that was about thirty feet tall on the inside and had marble floors and stone pillars. I walked around the place(s) a little more and find that each building was gargantuan as well. EVERY SINGLE DETAIL was expensive. There were showers in every bathroom, dressing rooms for the choir, closets the size of my living room that only hold the choir's robes, LED exit signs, bridal rooms, the sanctuary had five oversized plasma TV's just to show the words of the songs being sang, etc…etc…
So here it is. The moment where I anticipated to walk into the GIANT sanctuary to justify the giant church, right? Wrong. The maximum capacity (as listed on the wall of the upper part of the sanctuary) was 810. So just for benefit-of-the-doubt's sake, I told myself it was probably a college campus, homeless shelter, orphanage, or whatever could justify all of this non-sense. I walk up to one of the pastors on staff, and asked him what kinds of purposes the buildings served. I asked if they were for teaching, community service, or the like. His reply was a simple "Nope. S'just a church" I proceeded to ask if there was a large youth program and he interrupted me in mid-sentence saying "No, sir. It is only a church"
Now, our tour was sponsored by a charity organization known as "Compassion International," which has this program where you can feed, clothe, educate, and give medical attention to a needy child in another country for only thirty-eight dollars a month. So here I was thinking, if this church spent even a tenth of what they spent on these buildings and donated it to a charity like Compassion, literally an entire village-maybe an entire town- could be saved. Also, this whole story begs the question…is the blood of the children that could have been saved on the wealthy American church's hands?
All of this to say, I began immediately writing the first line to our newly made song, saying "Why do we paint the walls of our churches with the tears of the starving children?" I understand it's the easiest way to be controversial by writing a song against widely-understood corruption in the church, but we're not writing/releasing this song to be "edgy" or "controversial", we're releasing this song to not only bring this serious matter to attention, but also to disassociate the love of Jesus Christ from the acts of churches and people like these.