Well, scratch that, I have a little more to say.
This is what I thought a lot of the time: Oh my gosh, what am I watching? A strip tease or a music performance? A hosting narrative or a crass, sexual comedy script?
I am amazed what is considered art by mainstream millennials these days.
Apparently, if you want to make it big in the music industry, you don’t have to worry about talent or style. If you have a big butt, shake it. And if you’re skinny, shake it anyways! Throw in a mountain of sexual references, sexual hand gestures, sexual body language, and profanity, and you’re set to make it big. That kind of sexual ludity used to be reserved to a category all its own. You know, in playboy, r rated movies, and porn. Ok, so privates were covered in the vma show, (barely) but the attitude and promiscuity is pretty darn close the same.
Music lyrics require no mystery, no tact, no class. Just put the crass words to a rap, and suddenly the world embraces it as art.
Why did you watch it?
Because I have my eye set to look for the good. Yes, even in pop culture. What I just described does not apply to everyone, thankfully. If it wouldn’t have been for Justin Bieber and Tori Kelly, the VMA’s would have been a sham in my opinion.
I have been watching Bieber for years, and I am so proud to see him manage to keep his mind straight and his head above the water of fame and press.
Even though I always look for good, my disdain for what I didn’t like about the show became rather toxic in my mind the last few days, I’m ashamed to say.
I’m reminded again that it is easy to judge people in the spotlight, but I’m pretty sure average folks would crumble under the extreme pressure of popularity. My hat is off to the few, like Bieber, who come back from some bad choices. It truly takes the hand of God to keep a public figure well and whole under that pressure. Honestly, media makes it so much harder to keep a central path.
We all make bad choices; we simply don’t have cameras watching our every move, snowballing gossip. It’s truly pathetic to hold celebrities to a standard we don’t hold ourselves or a random stranger on the street to.
I know we prefer public figures to be good role models, but I still find it fascinating that celebrities get more dirt thrown at them for acting the way most teen and young adults do these days. Not that it’s justified either way, but it’s something to think about.
It’s easy to view celebrities as free entertainment puppets instead of real people. That is simply not true. The thing is, celebrities are strangers to us; they may lead somewhat public lives, but they aren’t public property. We don’t have a right to decide for them any more than we do for our neighbors or strangers. Their public appearances, performances, and even public works are far from the complete picture of their hearts.
If I don’t like what celebrities produce, I don’t have to watch or listen to it, same as I control the company I keep. It is totally my choice what I injest into my life.
However, celebrities themselves deserve respect and gentleness simply for being human as we all are. Being in the spotlight makes them much more vulnerable to failure and scandal, which is why we should pray for them instead of cursing them further.
I try to remember that when I get super annoyed at Miley or Nicki. My neighbor down the street may have the same heart. Neither are my responsibility, except for prayer. Also, let’s try to remember that before spewing distasteful judgment calls and opinions about the Duggar scandal or the reimerged Caitlynn Jenner. We all come from the same dust, and we all stand before the same God. Worry about yourself first.
The world is cray cray right now, I know. Moral standings are in the air, political agendas run hot, and everyone is offended at everyone else’s interpretation of everything, regardless if there happens to be a right or wrong answer.
All that aside, it’s easier to understand depravity knowing our own despicable failure and hypocrisy. It’s easier to love broken people when we know How God loves us.
The lacking element in the vast chaos is the experience of God. We can not be without Him. We can not afford to not see humans the way He sees them.
Kingdom come. Thy will be done on earth as it is in Heaven. Heaven is pretty great, if that’s any indication of His plans for us on the earth.
We are broken vessels seeing into eternal mirrors of whole design. We’ll live to see it in mortal times as well.
© Brenda Kanagy