I was watching the concert video "TobyMac: Alive and Transported" with my daughter today and, during the concert, TobyMac told the story of writing "The Slam." (You can click the title above to hear it if you don't know it.) He said he sat in his car after he saw "The Passion of the Christ" with his "pen and notebook" and thought, ya know, my Jesus didn't halfway do it... he slammed it. Now, seriously, when you first hear the song, you aren't quite sure what to make of it, especially if you're not familiar with TobyMac. It's loud and rockin' and most churches probably wouldn't put up with it. But here's the thing...

...that very song has been known to make me cry.

Why? 'Cause "my Jesus slammed it." See, some people don't like TobyMac or other artists like him who full-on put Jesus music to hip-hop or rock or pop or punk or whatever beats. They think it's sacrilege. I don't. I think, when it's real and it's anointed and it's 100% about God that it's, well... it's about God. This is why I just love TobyMac and guys like him. It is full-throttle, straight-on, unashamed joy and love for Jesus that gets them up there singing that song.

I used to have a preacher who said that we go to football games and baseball games and we cheer for our teams, so how come we don't walk up in church and just shout with all of our mights, "WAY TO GO, JESUS!" And to me, that's what artists like that are doing. They're yelling, "Oh yeah... My Jesus SLAMMED it!" For real, isn't that what a lot of us--especially the ones younger than me--would shout out if they really meant it?

Don't get me wrong... I love every kind of Jesus music there is, from the oldies to the newbies. And I love it when people shout out, "Praise the Lord!" and "Hallelujah." But I also used to teach middle schoolers and high schoolers, and it was really coming from the very core of their soul when they started using "street words" (for lack of a better term) for Jesus. When they started talking about Jesus with that kind of feeling, the kind of words that were the ultimate in "cool" to them, then I knew they were deep down feeling their Jesus. It's genuine and it's real and it's them meeting Jesus where they really and truly live, with a geniuneness that I totally miss out on sometimes.

And this is why I love TobyMac and Relient K and Audio Adrenaline and Kutless and Plankeye and so many others... they are talking their authentic talk, sharing their real selves with Jesus and with us. MAN! That just makes me high, ya know? Being genuine for Jesus? Wow... What if we were all that way?
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