We’ve been telling you for months that this would happen and now it’s official: Tenth Avenue North has scored their first number 1 radio single with “Love Is Here” from their debut project “Over And Underneath”.
The song has garnered a total of 11,913,700 million impressions and is also ranked No. 6 on the R&R Christian AC Monitored chart and No. 2 on the R&R Christian CHR chart, a major achievement for a new band in any genre.
In addition to great radio momentum, the band continues to receive incredible support from the media. Feature stories and reviews have already run in Christian Retailing, CBA Retailers+Resources and YouthWalk. Billboard Magazine, in its May 31st edition, noted:
This potent combination of music and lyrics adds up to the year’s best Christian debut.
Now do you believe us? What are you waiting for? Go over to i-tunes or your local retail store and pick up their amazing project. You won’t be disappointed.
If you come to like their music, then you’ll really come to enjoy their ministry check out Mike’s recap of a recent trip to two “girls only” events and his challenge to al of us in today’s “lustful” world.
This past month,
we as a band, had the privilege of speaking at a “girls only” time
at a Student Venture Getaway. Two Getaways actually.
One in Myrtle Beach, and the other in Colorado.
It was a bit unnerving at first,
all these girls staring at you, waiting to see what you’re going to say,
waiting for you to affirm who they can date and what they can wear.
Scary, to say the least.
Now, I think we all had our share of verbal mishaps during the discussion,
but I feel like after a few minutes, the band as a whole became
more and more comfortable, and really, “came into their own,” so to speak.
We covered a lot of thoughts and opinions on sex and dating, and
how far is too far? You know, all the good stuff, and
we also received a fair amount of feedback from a lot of you guys.
It’s terribly interesting material, and I feel like we only had time
to merely touch on, a lot of the major topics.
Therefore, I thought that it could be beneficial for us all to at least
post some of these thoughts and feelings, and at least maybe get a
conversation going between us and all of you.
There will be several posts coming in the near future,
but I thought that the topic of lust ought to be the first thing to address,
seeing as how, many other thoughts will inevitably springboard from it.
So, having said all that, here you go:
What is lust?
What should a girl be allowed to wear?
and do guys really lust after them all the time?
Well, in answer to guys lusting, the answer is:
unfortunately, yes…almost all the time.
Guys lust after girls, and this indeed is a great tragedy that has fallen
upon mankind, ever since the beginning.
Adam and Eve were once, “naked and unashamed.”
They had no fear of being objectified, or more importantly,
“separated,” by the opposite sex.
Now, what do I mean by “separated,” you might ask?
Well, by “separated,” I simply mean, that once sin entered the garden,
suddenly, and assuredly, the opportunity was now made available
for Adam to look at Eve’s body, apart from her soul, and use it for his own pleasure.
This is the tragedy of lust.
Eve, separated in Adam’s mind, could now be viewed at his own leisure,
and for his own desires. He could now, “use” Eve.
In other words, before the fall, the reason Adam and Eve could be naked
and feel no shame, was because there wasn’t even the possibility to be used
by another person. Adam could only see Eve as whole; body and spirit, and
conversely, Eve could only see Adam as whole.
They could never receive pleasure from one another, without first,
giving all of themselves away in the same act.
Love and sex, was a losing oneself and gaining the other in the same moment.
They were “naked and unashamed,” and it was beautiful. Innocent. Virginal.
However, the introduction of sin, made the separation of body and soul
available to humans for the first time. The ability to get pleasure from
solely “looking” at a human body was now entering the picture.
So, the reason that lust is so shameful and so destructive, is that,
in essence, you can now turn a “her” into an “it.”
She’s no longer a person, with aspirations and dreams and a personality,
no, now she’s just a picture, she’s just an object,
she’s merely an “it,” for the guy to do with as he so pleases.
This is tragic. This is shameful. This is what we are all guilty of.
There is no sacrifice in lust. There is no giving of oneself away to another.
There is no offering the whole of one’s self, to the whole of someone else.
No. There is only self-seeking. There is only objectification.
There is only separation.
That’s why we wear clothes now, to specifically cover those areas
which may possibly be used for another’s gratification, apart from our soul.
if this is true,
then you must always ask yourself, “is the part of my body that I’m showing
at the moment, a part of my body that a guy could be using for his own pleasure?”
“is this a part of my body that a guy could use without ever really knowing me?”
A good way to figure that out is to ask yourself, “would I be comfortable with
a stranger touching me here?”
Because, sadly, most guys, being visual creatures,
and in the wake of the fall, being sinful creatures,
well, most guys will touch in their mind,
whatever part of a girl’s body that they can see.
in one sense, it is definitely not your fault at all that guys will do this.
Men are indeed responsible for their own lusts, and should at all costs,
take their thoughts captive to never use a girl’s body for their own pleasure,
but still, men could really use your help.
A simple way for a girl to help is this:
when you get dressed, let your thoughts be,
“how much can I help my brothers out?”
“How much can I preserve the unification of my body with my soul?”
and let your thoughts not be, “what do I think looks cute?”
Granted, there’s nothing wrong with fashion and looking good,
but always be mindful that the destruction of a brother’s purity is often times,
hanging in the balance, every day, every time you get dressed.
I hope your soul feels the weight of that.
You play a role in preserving someone else’s purity.
It is a tragedy to be sure, that lust has entered the world,
that the possibility for objectification has prevailed upon us,
but still, let us fight it at all costs.
Never let a “she” become an “it.”
And guys, may we not, like the guy in Transformers, ogle a girl’s body and think it’s love.
It’s not. “Love is not self-seeking.” Love protects, love longs to restore wholeness.
And you know, that’s what the Hebrew word “shalom” actually means. “Whole.”
Let our desire as men be to bring back together what sin has separated.
To bring wholeness, where sin has caused separation.
Women are more than pictures on a screen.
They are more than objects for our gratification.
They are children of the most high God.
Designed in his image, to display his glory.
Feel the weight of the destruction of lust.
And women, let us not agree with the girl in Transformers when she says,
“I’m just a sucker for big arms and tight abs…..do you think I’m shallow?”
Men too, are more than just a body to hold you close and make you feel valuable.
They are more than what you can use them for.
And also, sadly, while some actually like the attention they receive from gawking men,
let me just say, please…please know that you’re worth more than that.
You’re worth far more than the attention that your body can receive.
You were meant to be loved in truth. In wholeness.
So, let us instead, look deep into the eyes and soul of the opposite sex,
wishing to bring together, soul and body, in one affection, and in one purpose.
To restore the shalom, the wholeness, that was lost at the fall.
And besides, if you attract someone with just your body, guess what?
6 months from now, you’ll only hear yourself saying,
“He/she, only wants me for my body, for my face, for my sex.
I want them to want me for me!”
And so do I.
So does God.
But you must first present your whole self to Him, and to others.
Or else separation is just the next logical step.
Now to Him who is able to keep you from falling,
may He guard our hearts and minds until the coming of Christ Jesus.
May God make right what we have made so wrong.