This week, we are featuring a series of reflections by Brian Harriett on music from dc Talk, a Christian rock/rap trio founded in 1987.
19 Know this, my dear brothers and sisters: everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to grow angry.
Hey, tell me haven’t you hearddc Talk (“Luv is a Verb,” 1992)
Love is a serious word
Hey, I think it’s time you learned
I don’t care what you say, I don’t care what you heard
The word “love,” (Ha!) love is a verb
My life has been a panoply of music, both vocal and instrumental. I credit my musical family, the church choir and its director, and the way music has brought truth to my life. This week’s theme is inspired by the American Christian rap and rock music trio dc Talk. To me, their lyrics highlight how love is more about action (a verb) than just a thought or feeling.
I also found it interesting that, while English has only one word for “love”, the Greek language, used in writing the New Testament, has at least six*. When I speak love, I could hardly mean the same thing “I love cheeseburgers” as “I love my grandmother!”
Music is one way to parse what we really mean in love and how we should follow God’s love in active ways. These ways help to understand when comparing verses from the Bible.
James 1:19 is “partly” about why God created us with two ears and only one mouth (pun intended). “Know this, my dear brothers and sisters: everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to grow angry.” This verse, and dc Talk’s musical lyrics, challenge us to both hear and to act in love.
By Brian Harriett
For Pondering & Prayer
Remember that love can also be an adverb! What have you heard lately from a loved one, or a stranger, and did you prayerfully consider how to lovingly respond?
Prayer: Whenever someone speaks to me, I have a choice. Lord, help me to be more loving, rather than to get myself worked up and act out of anger. Thank you, Lord, for keeping me in your perfect peace. Amen.
*Agape: universal, unconditional love, Eros: romantic, passionate love, Philia: intimate, authentic friendship, Ludus: playful, flirtatious love, Storge: instinctual, familial love, Philautia: love for one’s self.
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