I love watching American Idol.
It’s obvious if you sneak a peek into my iTunes playlist. I’ve got Season 7 David Archuleta’s ethereal Imagine and Season 8’s Matt Giraud’s Funny Valentine mixed in with Josh Wilson’s Savior, Please and Third Day’s Surrendering.
I get really into it during the last few weeks leading up to the finale. I wait for the voting lines to open at the end of the show, and I get busy.
The show’s formulaic, but there’s an element of AI I never get tired of. I call it The Tipping Point.
You never know if a contestant will face TTP. Not everyone gets that far. A person arrives at TTP, only if he can push past a series of challenges.
If successful, a person will go from being an average singer to becoming an artist.
Your Spiritual Tipping Point
Amusingly enough, I started noticing that some of the feedback from AI judges about musical performance also applies to cultivating a life God desires.
Do you find similar challenges in your faith walk, behind these AI-inspired commentary?
1. Identity Confusion. “What kind of artist do you want to be?”
— What kind of life do I want to be living?
2. Lack of Confidence. “If you’d just start to believing in yourself…”
— What would I do differently, if I was truly believed that nothing is impossible for God?
3. Bad “Song” Choices. “It’s doesn’t match your style or your voice.”
— What choices bring me closer to expressing how God’s made me?
4. Too Karaoke. “Too Safe. Robotic.”
— How can I relate to others more openly and deeply, rather than stay safe and robotic?
5. Copycat. “Take a risk. Make it your own.”
— I tend to compare myself with others, when I’m afraid to fail. What could I dream up, if I didn’t worry what others thought?
We may not have our sights set on a recording contract, but we can all relate to being on the journey to find our Spiritual Tipping Point.
Spiritual Tipping Point.
It’s the place where the momentum for God’s change in our lives becomes unstoppable.
If we push through the challenges of holding back, we go from living an average religious lifestyle– to surrendering to the artistry of God’s original design.
We’ll find our voices and sing new songs in a way that no else can.
What challenges are you stepping through, to reach your spiritual tipping point?
Share how you’ve recently overcome a challenge, to reach a spiritual tipping point.
“Let us also lay aside every encumbrance
and the sin which so easily entangles us (disbelief),
and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us…”
* THURS 4/15 *
It’s time for a Faith Barista Jam!
— Which means I’ll be putting a
call out for you to blog with me!
The topic is a lot of fun & life
changing, too! Seriously.
Don’t miss it!
* I NEED YOUR VOTE! *
I’m sharing a big spiritual tipping point in my life– And entering it in a contest next week.
I’m gonna need your help, since the entry with the most votes wins! Will you help me get out the vote? Thanks, everyone!
Be sure to catch the previous posts on the series Say Yes To Joy: Step 1: After The Rain: Say Yes To Joy Step 2: A Trip For Ice Cream: What Do You Really Want Step 3: Risky Business: Changing Negative Character Traits Step 4: 10 Ways To Make Rest One Ambition[ This is an original Faith Barista post, where Bonnie Gray serves up shots of faith for everyday life. ]
I like how you found a way to finally drag Simon into Christianity! Actually, the questions you asked are valid and true. For me, the one about originality was especially poignant. I want so badly to be different, and yet i work so hard to be like everyone else!
David, http://www.redletterbelievers.com, “Salt and Light”
Isn’t ironic? I see it so obviously on AI, when a contestant could be SO good, but then they end up just doing a copy cat. And I’m always like, “Doh! C’mon! Just be yourself.”
.. Talk about preaching to the choir!
And another thought. Don’t we as Christians sometimes face the ‘panel of judges’ about our faith? They won’t let us just follow Christ with our heart!
I blogged about American Idol and infuence from Christians at:
Thnx, David. I’ll check your link out…
Great post and excellent questions Bonnie. I especially relate to the parts about playing it too safe and being a copy cat. I think they can be closely related. In the Christian life it’s easy to try imitating what worked for others. The results are somewhat easy to see, and so it seems like the safe choice.
In my own life, taking risks has lead to a kind of tipping point over the past few months. When we take steps of obedience according to how we sense God leading us, we place ourselves in a position of dependence on God, which is right where he wants us to be. However, that’s not an easy place to be by any means! However, Over the past few months I have enjoyed a deeper intimacy with God as he reveals the places where I have not surrendered certain desires to him and where I need to make loving him my goal.
BTW, did I just make the first comment on this post? I guess that’s the benefit of being on the East Coast… 🙂
.-= Ed Cyzewski´s last blog ..Life-Changing Books: The Cost of Discipleship =-.
Ed, it’s awesome you’ve pointed yourself in the direction of surrender and kept going to get to the other side. It sounds like it’s true newness from within… rare and coveted.
“If we push through the challenges of holding back, we go from living an average religious lifestyle– to surrendering to the artistry of God’s original design.”
Girl you have no idea how much I needed to hear this today.
Now I must confess I’m not a fan of American Idol in any way, shape, or form but I do love the analogy you’ve created. I think the thing that has always held me back (and which God is helping me push through every day) is worrying about what other people think. My spiritual tipping point came when I stopped trying to say what others wanted to hear and began speaking what God was telling me to share. Not always an easy thing to do but has done a lot to help me grow closer to who He’s created me to be.
Thanks for sharing this great post 🙂
.-= Kristine McGuire´s last blog ..Did I Mention I Hate To Clean?? =-.
“My spiritual tipping point came when I stopped trying to say what others wanted to hear and began speaking what God was telling me to share. ”
Kristine– girl, you just told me what **I** needed to hear! Thanks for sharing a great comment! 🙂
“If we push through the challenges . . . we go from living an average religious lifestyle– to surrendering to the artistry of God’s original design.”
Love this, Bonnie!
It’s exactly what I am trying to do with my life right now. And yes, I have taken some steps. I’m still taking them. And it’s hard. It’s really hard. And confusing. The challenges have a way of shifting their shape and creating a moving target.
But I know with God’s help, Ill find my way.
“The heart of man plans his way,
but the Lord establishes his steps.” Proverbs 16:9
.-= Cassandra Frear´s last blog ..Pushing Through =-.
“The heart of man plans his way,
but the Lord establishes his steps.” Proverbs 16:9”
Cassandra, what a perfect post to share… it’s a moving target… that gets us moving… 🙂
Inspiring post, Bonnie!
I guess I want to believe that this: “If we push through the challenges of holding back, we go from living an average religious lifestyle– to surrendering to the artistry of God’s original design.” is ACTUALLY a tipping point – That there is a point where it becomes inevitable. Most of the time I feel like I’m slogging through the swamp or the bog or the slough of my own resistance and can’t see an end to it. Occasionally the light shines through and I get a firm footing. Those seem to be the times my focus is on the Lord Jesus and am so transfixed in wonder and gratitude that He truly does make my feet like hinds’ feet in high places.
Thanks for the inspiration today!
“That there is a point where it becomes inevitable.”
“transfixed in wonder and gratitude” — Karen, these words mesmerize me… It’s *SO* true, whenever I get to this point you’re describing, the light floods and it’s as you say, “inevitable”… It gets so addicting, it feels so lacking when it’s missing.
Beautiful images crossed my mind reading your reflection– thank you!
“It’s the place where the momentum for God’s change in our lives becomes unstoppable.”
So good, Bonnie. I haven’t watched AI this season, but I’ve watched a lot of the previous seasons. I’ve never made the connection between the judges critique and our spiritual walk, but it so works!
Out of your examples I’d says the area I’m struggling with right now is “Bad song choice” and being a copycat. I struggle with stepping out boldly in an area I feel God is leading me. I don’t know how to trust that it’s my voice. Then, because of my lack of confidence I tend to copy others who are successful in that area instead of just trusting that God has a unique purpose for me.
Thanks for sharing this and giving me something to think about. 🙂
.-= Melissa Brotherton´s last blog ..My Fish & Loaves =-.
Melissa, I am like a crazy AI fan… of you! … I’d LOVE to hear what you experience, if you STEP OUT and do this thing you feel God is leading you! I just know it will totally amaze you. Seriously, girl! BE YOU!
Bonnie, I’ve been climbing the mountain. Sometimes slowly. Sometimes vigorously. Sometimes stopping to rest, to question, to rebel. Recently I noted that I think I’m at the peak and not intended to simply scramble back down the same path I’ve already forged. So leap it is! My Daddy packed my chute! If I gingerly rappel down, I’ll never spill out and discover what He’s filled up! I like the way you think! 🙂
.-= Susan´s last blog ..Music… A Story of the Heart =-.
Hey Susan, rip the cord and JUMP… Can you take me with you, after you land, then? 🙂
For me, the biggest challenge that I am slowly overcoming is working through identity confusion. I lived for many years trying to be someone that I thought others wanted me to be. All this did was lead me to depression and despair. I am now beginning to be the me that God wants me to be!
.-= Kevin M.´s last blog ..The Me I Don’t Want to Be =-.
Kevin, same here. I can’t go back to being that person again… depression and despair. We’ve gotta just keep going and take a chance on God. 😉 LOL.
Nice comparison here and so true. That tipping point (in life and on American Idol) can go both ways, we can get lost in all of it if we lose direction and the sense of who we are… lots to think about!
.-= jasonS´s last blog ..Mad Church Disease – Emotional Health =-.
Totally, Jason. That’s why there’s a lot of drama for me watching AI… I always wonder will he/she keep going or retreat back… How ’bout me? It’s very inspiring & sobering for me.
Well once again, I love your post Bonnie! I enjoy watching American Idol. It’s exciting to watch a few of the contestants really grow as they are coached.
I love how you termed the Spiritual Tipping Point to compare our spiritual growth and walk.
My struggle comes in when my flesh gets in the way and takes over. This typically happens when I’m stressed or very hungry or tired.
When I submit to the Holy Spirit my life reflects Christ in me. He works in me and through me to reach others. I love when that happens and I cannot claim the glory. Even my husband notices the difference. And that makes me smile!
Blessings and love,
.-= Debbie´s last blog ..Praying the Names of God ~ Adonay =-.
“Stressed, tired or hungry.. ”
Amazing what a toasted bagel and a good night’s rest — and a good laugh will do! 😉
As an avid AI watcher, I loved this! I won’t be able to see another show without thinking this way.
Thanks for opening my eyes!
.-= Duane Scott´s last blog ..the post in search of a title =-.
Hi Duane… AI results show’s on now.. I’ve got Tivo recording.. LOL.
This was a great post. I’ve been thinking about your question throughout the day and, admittedly, it’s difficult to think of a spiritual tipping point because I don’t believe that I’m ever where I really want to be in my relationship with the Lord. For me, and I would guess for most of us, surrender is daily reality.
However, if I had to choose, one tipping point for me would have to be when I was ordained a priest. I did have doubts and struggles leading up to my ordination. That day, when I literally prostrated myself on the cathedral floor, was a time of total surrender. From that day forward, my life took on completely new meaning. I am a priest forever. My life has never been the same since that day, and it’s a beautiful life.
Peace to you!
.-= Fr. Michael´s last blog ..Wounds Healed by Wounds =-.
Dear Fr. Micheal — talk about *tipping point* ! It’s true, doubts and struggles can coexist with faith. Hopefully, they will drive us to placing our faith in Him. How beautiful to hear that the literal prostrate position you took, reflected a surrendered life from within. And from that abandon, you received something of beauty since then. May it continue to be renewed and overflow!
One of my tipping points came when FatherGod told me to tell people the whole truth of the call He has on my life. I was calling it-being an intercessor. He calls it-being a prophet. I was scared as to how people would view me, but was obedient anyway. A few people said to me, “What took you so long? I’ve known for quite some time.” Others said, “I thought there was more to what you were saying. Thanks for the insight.” There are most likely some who think I’m a nut case, but I won’t let that hinder me. My desire is to be obedient to my LORD.
[…] Yesterday, I wrote about breaking past our inner hurdles, in order to get to our Spiritual Tipping Point. […]
I also love American Idol…I’ve been catching up online 🙂
.-= Maureen´s last blog ..Holocaust Memorial Day =-.
I think I’m at a tipping point right now. I’ve been there for a while, and I know I need to push on through and find out what’s on the other side. Haven’t done it yet, and I’m not sure what’s holding me back.
.-= Rachel @ the science of music´s last blog ..serendipity =-.
Your thought-provoking post really got my attention :). I don’t watch much television, but I have been hooked on American Idol for a number of years. For me personally, it has always been about much more than just their music abilities or how marketable they look. I must feel a connection to their life story in someway. This year I really like Lee because of his humbleness. When I heard a little about his personal triumphs that he had attended an alternative high school for being a “bad boy” and that a teacher “mentor” helped him turn his life around and has been in the audience rooting for him, I remembered the times adult role model have encouraged me when I struggled to believe that nothing was impossible for God. Thanks for sharing; I am glad I stopped by.
.-= JoAnne Bennett´s last blog ..Gentle Hearts =-.
This is so challenging, Bonnie. When I am not praying over all of these areas, I concentrate #2 and #5. I constantly remind myself that I can’t, but He can. I am not, and that is why He will.
I love the relevance and depth of this post. I don’t even watch AI. Thanks for making me think on it.
.-= Tracy´s last blog ..When Fierce Love No Longer Works In A Family =-.
[…] Last week, I issued a “What If” challenge to the readers here, to nudge us closer to our spiritual tipping point. […]
It has taken me much longer than I planned, but I am finally getting over to your blog to read your stuff. LOVED this post. I love how you defined the Spiritual Tipping Point “the place where the momentum for God’s change in our lives becomes unstoppable.” I hit my Spiritual Tipping Point about a year ago and the journey has been incredible ever since… incredibly painful, incredibly remarkable, incredibly beautiful, incredibly killing and incredibly healing. I’m sorry it took me so long to come here, but I’m here now. 🙂
.-= Grant Jenkins´s last blog ..Rebuild In Progress… =-.