A lot of people would like to meet people like George Washington or Martin Luther, maybe Martin Luther King Jr or some current star. But leave it to me to want to meet Blake Lewis (American Idol 2007). Maybe I’m just a non-conformist, but I do have several reasons. And personally I believe they are excellent ones (of course).
Reason 1 In a world of “copiers”, Blake Lewis is a creator.
“In the beginning God created” (Genesis 1:1). God is a creator. That’s who He is. And God made us “in His image” (Genesis 1:27). We were made to create. Now I know that we are merely created beings and not the creator. That job is God’s. However, I believe His desire is to create using people. Look how we came into being. God used our parents to create us, when He could just create mankind himself, like He did with Adam and Eve, but He doesn’t because He wants to create through us. One reason I think this is, is because creating through someone is such an intimate thing. Again, look at how you were made.
There is so much music today that sounds like all the other music. I don’t mind “retro”. I actually enjoy it because it allows me to go back to my 80’s roots. I will give you a moment here to thank my generation for all the good rock and roll… Speaking of, why did artists like Bob Dylan or Ray Charles, to mention a couple, ever make it? Their voices weren’t that good. Now that they’ve become icons and we are used to their voices, we might disagree with that statement. My wife definitely would. I myself personally love their style and their voices, but nonetheless, they’re not that great. But they made it because it was their music. They didn’t write their music for some other image to sing and look good on stage. It was their music, their style, and more importantly, their message that they just wanted to sing. I find it interesting that there was no “retro” to go back to in that day.
Reason 2 I respect anybody who stands firm and doesn’t go with the flow.
Not only did Blake Lewis go far in American Idol, but he went far being different, being himself. It’s not about being different, it’s about you being you. If you are being you, then you will be different because God is a creator and He doesn’t make any two things the same way, especially human beings! So why do so many people look and act the same? It’s the status-quo. It’s how we are told, in so many words, it’s how we are told, oftentimes subliminally, how we are supposed to act or who we are supposed to be. I believe this is something that greatly hinders creativity, because we are trying to be like others, instead of allowing ourselves to be who we were created to be. We are copying, instead of creating! Cynicism is something else that hinders creativity, but that’s another blog.
Reason 3 Being different takes a huge toll.
I think the spirit of racism is still alive and well, it just shows it’s head in a different way. When racism was so prevalent, it was when they’re weren’t a lot of different skin colors around. So, when some people saw someone with a different skin tone, it scared them. That’s really what caused racism, was fear. So that was why they became so awfully horrible to people of different skin color…because they were different. Today, I think we have a pretty good handle on racism (Thank God!). But that nasty spirit is still around. Today it attacks those who are different! Different in style. Different in thought etc. When someone is different, they face the looks. They face the rejection. They face people who see someone as different, and then put the pressure on them to become like everyone else (or maybe more specifically, like them). If everyone will go the way of status-quo, they won’t have to face the pressure of being themselves, of being different. We can just turn our brains off and copy. Copying is way easier than creating, which is another hindrance to creating. I struggle with confidence, and have had several tell me things like “you need to be confident”. And I certainly agree, but when someone is different and they constantly face others who try to squeeze them back into the tube they don’t fit in, this will pay a toll on their confidence. To be different, for me, means to constantly struggle with thoughts like “how I don’t fit”, ot Why can’t I just be like everyone else? There is a personal price here. For me, I believe, that if I were to act like the status-quo of my profession, it would definitely mean more bookings, more acceptance, more finances and support. My favourite far side cartoon is of a pack of penguins in black and white and one penguin in the very back of this huge multitude wearing a red bowtie and standing on his tiptoes singing “I gotta be me”.
No history has ever been made by someone who acted like everyone else! No one has ever done anything great by copying somebody else! To copy is to play it safe. To create is to take risks. It takes faith! It takes faith to be who God made you to be. If we’re not creating, are we being in the image God created us to be in? I’m not sure if Blake Lewis is a believer of Jesus, but I do believe he is acting in Jesus’ image. Hats off to Blake! Thanks for the inspiration!