Tag Archives: switchfoot

Switchfoot’s “Mess of Me” VS Lady Gaga’s “Born this Way”

I am sure that 99% of the people reading this blog post have heard the song “Born this Way” by Lady Gaga. Maybe 25% of you have listened to the Switchfoot song, “Mess of Me.” I actually just listened to this song not too long ago, and I couldn’t help but compare this song to Gaga’s Born this Way, solely due to the fact that they hold completely opposite mentalities. One song recognizes that the human heart is inherently wicked and that we have all made a mess of ourselves, needing some kind of redemption. The other song says, “I was born perfectly. I have no flaws, I am beautiful doing whatever it is I want to do or want to be.” Of course, most people who hear both these songs will naturally flock to the upbeat pop song that Lady Gaga created (in 10 minutes apparently) and love hearing that they shouldn’t feel any guilt at all for who they are, because A) they were born this way and B) God doesn’t make any mistakes, because He was the one who made you this particular way.

Compare the lyrics:

Switchfoot “Mess of Me”

I am my own affliction
I am my own disease
There ain’t no drug that they could sell
Ah, there ain’t no drug to make me well

I made a mess of me
I wanna get back the rest of me
I made a mess of me
I wanna spend the rest of my life alive

I made a mess of me
I wanna get back the rest of me
I made a mess of me
I wanna spend the rest of my life alive
The rest of my life alive

We lock our souls in cages
We hide inside our shells
It’s hard to free the ones you love
Oh, when you can’t forgive yourself
Yeah, forgive yourself

switchfoot_gagaLady Gaga “Born this Way”

It doesn’t matter if you love him or capital H-I-M
Just put your paws up
‘Cause you were born this way, baby

My mama told me when I was young
We are all born superstars
She rolled my hair and put my lipstick on
In the glass of her boudoir

There’s nothin’ wrong with lovin’ who you are
She said, ’cause He made you perfect, babe
So hold your head up, girl and you you’ll go far
Listen to me when I say

I’m beautiful in my way
‘Cause God makes no mistakes
I’m on the right track, baby
I was born this way

Don’t hide yourself in regret
Just love yourself and you’re set
I’m on the right track, baby
I was born this way, born this way

Give yourself prudence and love your friends
Subway kid, rejoice of truth
In the religion of the insecure
I must be myself, respect my youth

A different lover is not a sin
Believe capital H-I-M
I love my life, I love this record and
Mi amore vole fe yah

Don’t be drag, just be a queen
Whether you’re broke or evergreen
You’re black, white, beige, chola descent
You’re Lebanese, you’re orient

Whether life’s disabilities
Left you outcast, bullied or teased
Rejoice and love yourself today
‘Cause baby, you were born this way

No matter gay, straight or bi
Lesbian, transgendered life
I’m on the right track, baby
I was born to survive

No matter black, white or beige
Chola or orient made
I’m on the right track, baby
I was born to be brave

This is what Switchfoot’s message is with their song: We are a fallen human race. We have made a mess of ourselves. Just take a look at the horror and evil you see in this world. Rape, murder, genocide, pedophilia, etc. These are PEOPLE doing these things. Is Lady Gaga talking about those people too?Where does the line get drawn? Oh, rapist, just enjoy and love yourself today, cause baby you were born this way. Oh, pedophile, you go on ahead and love on those little kids, because God made you this way, and you enjoy it! Here is the truth guys. We are ALL a fallen people, every single one of us. Do you think that you are inherently a good person? Maybe you are a law abiding citizen, help out in some charities, and live your life not getting into anyone else’s business. Do we really, in the depth of our hearts and souls, think that we are a model standard of everything that is good in this world?

What would you do if you were put in a situation where food was scarce, you were driven mad with hunger and there was a child who had just snagged a bagel and was eating it in front of you? Would you sit next to that kid, pat his head, and be like “You enjoy that bagel, kid.” Maybe a few of you would. But most would either A) think about stealing it or B) steal it. My point is, at our core, we are not a perfect human race. We have plenty of flaws, so bad in fact, that we can’t even fathom some of the things we read or see on the news. And what is bad? How do we know that certain things are evil? Everyone can agree that murdering babies is wrong. (If someone doesn’t think that’s wrong then something is wrong with them). What makes it wrong? Is it just your opinion? If that is wrong, then what is right? Do we have a standard of something that is completely and perfectly good? Yes, I believe we do. I don’t believe that science or natural selection could provide humans with the sense of morality that we have. If this standard of ultimate good comes from God, then I believe Him when He tells us what is best for us, and what actions we should stay away from. He is the creator of the universe–I think He knows what He is talking about. Gaga is right. We are born this way, born with sin. No one is righteous except Him. Only when we realize how much of a mess we are, how we cannot keep living in this life trying to do things our way, can He begin working in our lives. In “Mess of Me,” the artists are saying to recognize that first, you are a mess, and second you are in need of some desperate help. They also say that once you realize this, you need to forgive yourself. This means you don’t live the rest of your life in guilt. You have been freed, knowing that you have been forgiven by the God that created you and loves you. You have been redeemed. I am not saying in any way, to think less of yourself constantly so that God can work more in you. I am not saying that he wants us to live life with low self esteem. On the contrary, I am saying to have a realistic idea of who you are, only then can you live a freeing life.

I love this quote, “The answer to “low self-esteem” is to understand that we do not DESERVE anything because we, in and of ourselves, are worthless. Yet, because the God of the universe has chosen to love us and redeem us with His very life, we have gained a value that is beyond compare. Knowing we are worthless humbles us before God and allows us to appreciate His grace and love, which are given to us even though we don’t deserve them. Knowing we are loved by God and redeemed by His blood, we see the value of each and every soul on this earth.”

Maybe Lady Gaga’s intention with this song was to celebrate how diverse we all are and that we should appreciate our unique personalities and talents that God has given us. I think she sincerely wants to have everyone love each other for who they are. I don’t have a problem with that. I do believe that we do need to love everyone. Jesus in the New Testament told us to love one another over 20 times. (And he did mean everyone.) Love isn’t the issue here. I believe Lady Gaga’s main (maybe a bit more discreet) message is that you should love who you are because you were born a certain way. I believe she specifically wants to address homosexuals with her song. Now, I am not going to dive too deeply in this, let me just say that it is uncommon for scientists to think that homosexuality is solely genetic. There are many factors as to why someone is homosexual. But even if it was, I would say, so what? Does that automatically mean it is morally appropriate? Yes, there are those who are genetically predisposed to be an alcoholic when they grow up. Do we still condone the act? There are those who are predisposed to become a sexual addict. Do we approve of that just because they were born that way? To learn more about this, click here.

Check out what this Denny Burk, dean of Boyce College and associate professor of New Testament , says about Lady Gaga’s understanding of being “born this way:”

.. It is true that God created human beings in His own image and that as a result every single human has intrinsic value and worth (Genesis 1:26-27). It is not true, however, that God endorses every thought and intention of the human heart. We live in a Genesis 3 world in which humanity and the cosmos are fallen and compromised by sin. That means that some of our desires are misdirected — even some of the ones that we are born with. That we desire sin from birth is not a cause for celebratory anthems but an indication of just how desperate the human condition really is (Psalm 51:5; 58:3; Jeremiah 17:9).

What kind of outlook do you have? Do you agree with the fact that we as a human race have made a mess of ourselves, or do you think that we all ought to accept the way we are because we are born this way?

“I’m ready now I’m not waiting for the afterlife”

I recently listened to Switchfoot’s new CD “Vice Verses” and there were so many songs on there that I immediately related to and wanted to share with you. I really appreciate deep and meaningful lyrics, so I wanted to reflect on these and share my own thoughts and opinions on their songs. This first song is called “Afterlife.”

I’ve tasted fire I’m ready to come alive
I can’t just shut it up and fake that I’m alright
I’m ready now
I’m not waiting for the afterlife

I’ll Let it burn the way the sunlight burns my skin
The way I feel inside, the way the day begins
I’m ready now
I’m not waiting for the other side
I’m ready now, I’m ready now

afterlifeCause everyday the world is made
A chance to change But I feel the same
And I wonder
Why would I wait till I die to come alive?
I’m ready now
I’m not waiting for the afterlife

I still believe we could live forever
You and I we begin forever now
Forever now

“I wonder why would I wait till I die to come alive.” I don’t know about you, but sometimes I feel as if I will only truly feel alive when I’m in heaven. As a result, I am subconsciously going through my life not living to my fullest extent, thinking that it will only come when I leave this world. I think that only when I am in heaven can I do all the things I’ve always dreamed of doing. Sometimes I think that the world isn’t good enough for me. This world is filled with pain, disappointment, sorrow, evil, greed, sometimes mediocrity. I loved reading adventure romance novels and watching movies all my life because it took me to another world that would always involve some kind of adventure, a dashing man to share that with me, some huge challenge we would need to overcome, and then marriage of course. But then the story ends. What happens after marriage? Most of the books and movies end once the couple decides to be together forever. Are they telling us that life is over once you get married? I never got to experience my storybook adventure romance novel and now I am married. So…now what? Is that the end for me? Did I really think that this story would happen to me in real life? No, not really. Maybe a little piece of me thought that one day I could finally have the story I always dreamed about, but I knew the chances of that happening are slim to none. How much of this though, is my own fault? How could I have been living my life now had I made different decisions? Perhaps take more risks, meet more people, live in a different country, etc.? How many opportunities did I miss out on because I have this thought in the back of my mind that my life CAN’T be lived to the fullest because my perfect story could only happen in a perfect place like heaven? Now, I’m not saying that all Christians are like me. Most of you know how to live life. You go on adventures, travel across the world, live in other countries, meet the craziest kinds of people, whatever. Good for you. I just hope that after you do all those things, you don’t feel an emptiness inside. Because we weren’t made to live life to the fullest in just the physical sense. If you do, you are just going through the motions trying to satiate the hunger inside begging for satisfaction. It is only by having satisfaction in Him first that you can fully enjoy other aspects of life.

The more I am learning God’s word, the more I am realizing how much God wants us to be fully alive in this world. Check out what Jesus says about His reason for coming to the world, “”I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.” John 10:10 This verse is talking about living life to the fullest, not just in the physical world but spiritually as well. It is only when we can combine these two with God’s will that we can experience an abundant life. He did not put us on this world to just “work for the weekend,” come home every night to watch TV and browse the internet, and to wonder when will be the next time you go on vacation.

Cause everyday the world is made
A chance to change But I feel the same

Everyday we are choosing our fate with every decision we make. That, I believe, is the hardest part. Making that change. We say that we want to change. People can give eloquent speeches on how much change should be made, but it all starts inside. With our hearts, souls, minds.

Are you ready now? I am. I am so sick of the same old thing everyday. I don’t want to live my whole week excited for my weekend. My story isn’t over. I believe that I first need to change my outlook on life, realize that I was put on this earth for a purpose, to glorify God through the talents He has given me, and to finally take action. I’m ready now, I’m not waiting for the afterlife.