Friday, 10 August 2012


Christian rock pioneer, Larry Norman, expressed this sentiment in a song on his album called Just Visiting This Planet He received plenty of persecution because of his God-honouring tunes. Because many older Christians believed rock music would lead teenagers into hell, they condemned every form of it.

In my upcoming How I Was Razed: A Journey from Cultism to Christianity memoir, I related how one church member took it upon herself to rectify my taste in music.


In spite of my efforts to bring people to Thee Church, certain members fretted once more about my apparent lack of sanctification. Because I remained a fan of rock music and had already purchased several dozen LPs, they sought to rectify my musical tastes.

"I'm concerned about the music you're listening to," Sister Eileen began as we finished eating supper one Wednesday evening in August. "I've bought you this nice album of music for young people." She pulled a record out of a plastic shopping bag and handed it to me. "I'm sure you'll like it."

I frowned as I examined the contrived cover art on the album in my hands. "Thanks," I replied, though I felt little gratitude.

The record sounded far worse than I feared when I played it the next afternoon. The moralistic, goody-two-shoes tone of its ghastly tunes and skits set my teeth on edge. Whoever composed both tried to relate to teenagers, but it sounded mawkish. Only my duty as a friend to Sister Eileen kept me listening to both sides of the disk.

"So, what did you think of that record?" she asked at lunch after the Sunday service.

"Well," I stalled, "I certainly appreciate you buying it for me."

"Yes, but did you enjoy the music?"

"Well, it's really not what I like listening to," I mumbled as I stared at my lap.


How I Was Razed is the testimony of how God revealed his true character to me after charismatic house church elders misled me for more than fifteen years. You're welcome to contact me directly for more information about this upcoming paperback.


  1. When I was in college, I had a friend who liked the kind of music on the record Sister Eileen bought you. This was in the 80's, and a local Christian bookstore sold performance tapes, cassettes that contained the accompaniments to popular Christian songs. My friend talked me into singing such a song with her and a group of others from her church during a service. The song was about friends. I've always thought performing with recorded accompaniment unprofessional so I don't know why I agreed to do this. I guess it was because I felt a sense of belonging with these people. When you feel like a square peg in a round hole because you're visually impaired, you consider any kind of acceptance a good thing.

    Abbie Johnson Taylor, Author of
    We Shall Overcome and
    How to Build a Better Mousetrap: Recollections and Reflections of a Family Caregiver

  2. LOVED this post! I remember Larry Norman! I became a Christian around 20 so (during the eighties) so I remember this same discussion and sentiment, mostly around 'syncopation'. I remember witnessing a 'bonfire' and feeling unsure about exactly what the standard was supposed to be... I've come to the conclusion that each believer must make this decision for themselves without condemnation toward others. We aren't to be stumbling block, but we shouldn't presume to be God's police either.


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