Nickelback Preachers and Michael Bay Churches
by Matt Rawlings
I grew up in the 1980′s and with the exception of the mullet, WHAM and parachute pants, I totally embraced the decade. I wore wrestling shoes, had an ear pierced (left ear only…Google it) and I was way into hair metal. So, I know superficial crud when I see it!
Speaking of superficial crud, I remember the first time I heard the band Nickelback and saw a Michael Bay film. If you’ve never heard Nickelback think of ripping off Night Ranger riffs from the early ’80′s and adding lyrics written by a 15-year old who thinks wrestling is real. If you’ve never seen a Michael Bay film (“Pearl Harbor” or “Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen”) think little plot, quick cuts and lots of stuff “‘sploding.”
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What they both have in common is that they are cookie cutter with little or no substance. Yet, they both draw big crowds. I understand why (did I mention I wore clothes from The Chess King in the ’80′s?)–people like to be entertained and want to avoid being challenged. You don’t have to think about a Nickelback single like you do a Bob Dylan song. You aren’t challenged with uncomfortable social realities watching the Bad Boys sequel as you are if you go see “The Dallas Buyers Club.”
I get it. Heck, every once in a while I’m guilty of running on the treadmill to my epic hair metal mix on my iPod.
But what may work for mindless pop culture does not work for the church of Jesus Christ. Oh, Nickelback preachers and Michael Bay churches can draw a crowd but getting butts in seats is really not that hard. I mean nearly a half million people paid to watch the Jacksonville Jaguars play last year and they probably couldn’t have beaten any college team from the SEC!
The question is what are you going to do with people who do show up…