Home > Articles > The Caring Touch > "  
 

/_-large.jpg" width=200 height=159 alt="" border=0 align=left hspace=14 vspace=10>
by Randy Becton

_.html" onmouseover="window.status='View a simpler page format that works well with printers.'; return true" onmouseout="window.status=''; return true" title="Printer-friendly Version">Print This Article   _.html" target="note" onmouseover="window.status='Send this article to a friend.'; return true" onmouseout="window.status=''; return true" onclick="OpenNoteWindow('');" title="Send this article to a friend.">Send it to a Friend  

 

    With no fanfare, a Christian record label for the first time scored a number-one single on Billboard’s country charts. The hit song is “Those Wooden Crosses” by Randy Travis — a long time country superstar — who now records with Word Records. The song is about a car wreck, a roadside shrine, and the painful image of a blood-stained Bible.

    The song tells a story about a farmer, a teacher, a preacher and a prostitute. They are traveling on a bus one day that collides with an eighteen-wheeler. Three of them are killed, later to be commemorated by three wooden crosses on the side of the road. Not until the last verse do we learn which one survived.

    After the wreak the preacher pushes a blood-stained Bible into the hooker’s hands and we’re led to believe he is witnessing to her as she is dying, asking her “Can’t you see the promised land?”

    In the song’s last stanza, the singer reports that this was a story his minister told last Sunday, as he held that blood-stained Bible up for all to see. Then came the twist, a classic surprise ending: the minister thanks the good Lord for the man who gave this Bible to his mama — that is, the prostitute — who, in turn, read it to him.

    It turns out that it was the preacher who died and the prostitute who survived. Her life was changed by his dying witness and his blood-stained Bible that he gave to her. It lead not just to her salvation but also to that of her child, who grew up to be a minister himself. Lon Helton, an editor for the trade journal Radio & Records, says the song is a “great story song in the hands of one of the greatest story song singers” in country music.

...the preaching of Jesus produces converts regardless of the culture’s dominant themes.
    Gene Veith writes books on American culture and religious trends. He also reports regularly in Christianity Today magazine and World magazine. Recently he wrote that songs “bringing explicit Christianity into the popular culture” are not a new trend in country music. Clay Walker’s “A Few Questions” asks God about suffering, The Dixie Chicks “God Speed,” Diamond Rio’s “I Believe” blends spiritual thought with worldly concerns, and Brooks and Dunn’s “Red Dirt Road” celebrates the place where someone wrecked their car but also “found Jesus.”

    These groups and these songs pass from the scene, but religious faith is a mainstay in country music. That’s what has some industry insiders like Mike Moore, program director of WSIX in Nashville, concerned. He believes this music will always sell to a narrow core but will never “give us the mass appeal.”

    It seems to me that the preaching of Jesus produces converts regardless of the culture’s dominant themes. “Christ is Lord and Savior,” proclaims the Christian. Randy Travis, in his song “Those Wooden Crosses,” struck a nerve with record buyers across America, making it a number-one song. And Travis has experienced a “conversion” in his personal life. A song about Jesus and a blood-stained Bible still reminds us that God can bring new life out of death. While it’s not a new theme, it still can make lost hearts sing.


Are you presently experiencing a new life? God’s word says, “if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!” This new life is a free gift of God through faith Jesus Christ. If you want to know more about this life that only Jesus can give you, sign up for one of our Bible courses. Wherever you are in life, whatever you’ve done, you can begin again. You may also contact Randy Becton at rbecton@heraldoftruth.org if you have questions about becoming a new creation.

 
Share Related
_.html" onmouseover="window.status='View a simpler page format that works well with printers.'; return true" onmouseout="window.status=''; return true" title="Printer-friendly Version">Print This ArticlePrint this Article

_.html" target="note" onmouseover="window.status='Send this article to a friend.'; return true" onmouseout="window.status=''; return true" onclick="OpenNoteWindow('');" title="Send this article to a friend.">Send it to a FriendSend it to a Friend



Heartlight encourages you to share this material with others in church bulletins, personal emails and other non-commercial uses. Please see our Usage Guidelines for more information.
Search

      © 2003, Herald of Truth and Randy Becton, Herald of Truth. Used by permission.

      Title: ""
      Author: Randy Becton
      Publication Date: August 7, 2003


 
Caring Touch
 
 
Hundreds more articles
like this are in the

ARTICLE ARCHIVE
...or search to find an article by keywords:



  Visit our Sponsors

Heartlight only exists because of your support! Click above to visit a sponsor, or donate to join us in our ministry.