Monday, July 14, 2008

CC Deville becomes a Christian!!

Those of you that aren't big into rock music may or may not know who CC Deville is, but I'm willing to bet that you all know the rock group Poison! CC Deville is the lead guitarist of the globally known group and he has recently decided to give his life to Christ! How amazing! What's even better....MY PASTOR WAS THERE FOR IT! My pastor, Pete Wilson of Cross Point Community Church in Nashville, TN was asked by CC to come backstage with some of our church elders to talk with him about things he can do to honor God through his music. Pete made a 6 minute video of his encounter with CC and his first Poison concert:

The one thing that really sticks out to me about this video is that when Pete is giving his cell phone number to the rockstar, CC asks him to promise on camera that if he calls and needs help that Pete will be there to guide him. HOW UNBELIEVABLE!! What an experience for the elders of Cross Point to live! I stole this video from .Pete's Blog.

Of course, with every victory comes a hurdle to jump over. If you look at this entry in Pete's blog, you'll notice that there were about 150 comments on the subject. That's because one reader of the blog felt the need to make negative comments about the situation that I ABSOLUTELY do not agree with. I will leave the blogger's name off of my blog for privacy purposes, but this person could not believe that a pastor of a church would dare go to a rock concert that promotes music about sex and drugs. This person believed that CC was not being genuine in his repentance and thinks that if CC were serious that he needs to let go of Poison and walk away. The fact that CC drank, cussed, and played to songs with lyrics like Poison has led this person to believe that he was not serious and scalded Pete for going to the concert.

1) Jesus doesn't need pastors and missionaries to bring people closer to God that are already Christians, He needs pastors and missionaries to bring people closer to God that do not know who Jesus is and what it is like to experience His grace. To scald Pete for going to the rock concert is insulting Jesus himself! His disciples were some of the most famous sinners in the Bible! And yet, Jesus felt that they were worthy enough to eat at the same table with why not allow pastors to reach out to the "un-reachable". It's not a challenge if you're preaching to someone who has grown up knowing Jesus from going to church when they were little. The challenge is getting someone who has never experienced faith to trust in the Lord!

2) No one on this earth is perfect. Every single one of us commits sin and on a daily basis at that! For this person to suggest that CC Deville should walk away from what has been his career for decades is hypocritical. This person says that if CC is genuine in his repentance of his sins he would leave Poison so that he doesn't commit those sins anymore. WHO ON EARTH DOESN'T COMMIT SIN???? NO ONE!!!! I'm not saying that it wouldn't be a good idea to leave the group, as it probably would make CC's walk with Christ easier, but that's not our place to determine! And assume that a real Christian repents and then walks away from sin is just ignorance. If any of us could actually go the rest of our lives and never commit sin, then we would be on the same playing field as Jesus and that's just absurd! CC may actually be doing exactly what God wants him to be doing. If CC is saved, then he can use his influence through Poison to bring others to Christ. Can you imagine if CC decided to follow Christ and then all the Christians around him were saying "Ok, now that you've made this decision, we're going to need you to stop cussing, stop drinking, stop being a musician, stop hanging out with your friends who do drugs and have pre-marital sex, you must be in a church every Sunday and must give a lot of your fortune to a church in tithing and you must do all of this right now." How overwhelming!!! This "rule based" approach to Christianity is exactly what turns people off about religion!

I'm about to get really personal into my past experiences...I grew up going to church at either First Baptist Church in Tuscaloosa with my parents, where I was baptized when I was maybe 9 or 10, or First Baptist Church in Moundville, AL where my grandparents were members. I even went to First Baptist Church of Hoover when I was in middle school and high school and went to countless numbers of mission trips and youth trips. One would say that I was an excellent christian and very secure in my faith because I went to church so much. Bottom line, I was not a true "Christian" until March 2004. I remember it like it was yesterday. The movie Passion of the Christ had just come out in February and I kept telling myself that I needed to go see it, but just kept putting it off. One night, I was driving to Birmingham from Tuscaloosa pretty late and I was in a potentially deadly car accident. I had a 2001 Honda Civic at the time and I totaled the crap out of it!

I was driving in the far left lane when a car that was in the median turned into my lane right in front of me. I was going 75 mph and had to swerve very quickly to not hit the SUV. Luckily no one was in the other lanes and I went right into the ditch on the right side of the road. I flipped my car about 8 times (according to witnesses). I do remember flipping once, but when I read the police report I was in shock that someone saw my car flip that many times. It landed on the wheels and as soon as it did I woke-up and got out of the car myself. An ambulance came to get me and took me to DCH back in Tuscaloosa. Doctors were shocked that I was alive and even more shocked that nothing was wrong with me! I had to get 7 stitches on my middle finger and all the blood vessels in my eyes were popped causing me to look like satan's spawn for several days, but other than that, no major injuries and not even a concussion!! How does one flip their car that many times and not even have a concussion?? I was in the hospital for several days and went to Birmingham after I was discharged to stay with my mom for maybe a week before returning to school.

What does this have to do with my walk to Christ? Well, if you think that I'm going to say that I saw the light when I passed out and Jesus talked to me, keep moving because that didn't happen. I can't explain it really. Something happened in me. When I got back from the hospital, something was different with me. In my car, I had a silver cross hanging from my rear view mirror. Nothing fancy, it was made of rhinestones, very cheap, probably got it from Claire's or somewhere like that, but VERY easily broken. Everything in my car was destroyed when I got in my wreck. Clean up crews found CD's that were scattered in a half mile radius. My books were in the backseat and they were shredded, all windows broken, side view mirrors torn off. Somehow, by the Grace of God, that cross remained untouched. There was one rhinestone missing out of maybe 40, but other than that, nothing touched it. How is that when everything else was destroyed and thrown from the car? That was where it started. From there I went to see Passion of the Christ and that was it for me. My life completely changed after that. Over a period of time, I stopped going out, stopped hanging out with bad influences, started going to church and for the first time, did research outside of church. I read the Bible in my spare time, particularly the New Testament. Lots of people said things. Many people told me to my face that they were proud of me only to find out that they were making fun of me behind my back. It hurt. But it didn't matter. I knew that I was doing the right thing and I had to find my place in society and until I figured that out, I couldn't hang around the same people anymore. I know who my real friends are today because of that experience.

What's the point of me telling that? Key word "over a period of time". It took some time for me to summon the courage to do those things. CC can't be expected to give everything up now and if he doesn't we should not say that he isn't genuine because that will only discourage him. He needs support, he needs prayers, and he needs friends he can talk to. CC will find his place just like I did. Do I go out? Yes. Do I drink? Sometimes, but not much. Do I cuss? Unfortunately that's one hard habit to kick. Do I still go to church? Absolutely. Do I still have a close relationship with God? Like no fact, I don't believe that I have ever in my life put my future and faith in God's hands like I've done in the past 6 months. I have let go of having control and let things happen to me instead of me trying to make them happen. I have a very genuine trust in God to deliver to me the life he wants me to have. I do believe that God wants me to be happy and that the path that I am on at this moment in time is the path he meant for me to be on all along. The quicker we realize that we are sinners and that Jesus suffered so that we wouldn't have to, the better off we'll be. Does this mean that we can go all out partying and living like there's no consequences because Jesus died on the cross? Absolutely not! I do still commit sin, but the difference between my sin now and my sin before I was saved is that now I feel bad and I pray for forgiveness and the strength to not do it again. Before I did everything with zero regret.

We have to realize that we are not perfect and we have to stop judging people for their sins. When we judge others we aren't helping the case for Christ, we're hurting it! I will be praying for CC and that he does not let the judgment's of people like that to affect his walk with Christ. Those of you that are fellow followers of Christ, please pray for CC as well. He needs his brothers and sisters!

Oh and in closing about the conversation about my wreck, the driver of the SUV was accused by witnesses of being intoxicated because of the way he/she was driving, however, since so many cars stopped to make sure I was ok, the driver got away with it. My insurance has been high for the past 4 years because the accident was claimed as my fault since the driver of the SUV was never found. Also, that cross still hangs on my rear view mirror today.