Monday, February 27, 2006

The Enemy Takes a Shot....

Wow.

I just received a really negative email from a listener who visited my web site. In my ten years online, this is the first email of this sort I've ever received from someone...

Here's a snippet, edited for content...

"I just now heard some of your music on 'Music Choice - Soundscapes'; I had never heard of you before, but I liked what I heard so I did a search on you and found your web site. I was totally turned off by your godism. Personally, I find godism to be offensive. If we all went around spouting our beliefs about such matters, we would surely "turn off" many people. (half?) If you are in the 'business' of selling your records, I would advise you to keep your beliefs private, but it seems to me that you are a preacher who happens to be able to play the piano. It's too bad that you cannot see that it is a talent you just happen to have, not a gift from your imaginary friend in the sky. I won't be buying."

Whoa.

I think the "enemy" just took a shot at me.

When I think of the motivation that must have caused this gentleman to write me, I have to wonder if he's under some conviction about his faith (or should I say, lack of faith). Otherwise, why would he feel the need to lash out?

It's one of those "methinks you protest too much" kind of things.

The first thing I did was delete his email, but then I kept wondering if I should respond to him. I was a bit afraid to, to be honest. I mean, you never know what people will do. If I respond, and respond honestly, am I just fueling a fire that could have a REALLY negative reaction?

But then I decided that "fear" should not be my motivation for not responding. To quote the Apostle Paul in 2 Timothy, "God hath not given us the spirit of fear, but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind."

So, for the record, here was my response...

"Thank you very much for writing. You know, in the ten years I've offered my music online, yours is the first negative email or comment I've ever received about the expression of my faith in my music or on the web site. On the contrary, I've received hundreds of emails encouraging me to keep doing what I'm doing. I am continually amazed at how God uses my music, as well as the words I've written, to touch the lives of people I've never met. It's a humbling thing.

Here are a few examples of the kinds of email I usually receive... http://www.davidnevue.com/testimonials.htm

Music is how I express my faith, and I wouldn't want it any other way. God made me and I am His. If I do anything - anything at all -it should glorify Him. If it doesn't, then ultimately it's a waste of time and energy.

To answer your question, no, I'm not a preacher. I'm just a piano player and composer who loves Jesus.

As to offending people with that fact, well, no matter what you do in life, you are bound to offend someone. Those who are meant to hear and receive my music and the message that comes with it, will. And if someone doesn't, well, I guess they don't. I mean, there's a lot more offensive stuff out there than this little ol' piano player. I'm hardly worth being offended over.

I do thank you for your email, though. I actually found it be encouraging. I sometimes wonder if I am perhaps too quiet in expressing my faith, that I am not bold enough. I guess your email implies otherwise, though I think what I've written on my web site is a far cry from being "preachy." The words I've written there just express who I am, what I believe, and why I do what I do.

God is merciful, forgiving, and loves you. That's not something to be offended by. It's good news and a message of love. I truly hope that someday you'll find that message to be not offensive, but instead a source of joy, peace, and hope."

So there you have it. I wonder what his response will be, if any. I'm bracing myself. Maybe I'll post a follow up in this message later. So if you're interested, check back.

I guess it's part of putting yourself out there. If you stand up, there's always someone who wants to knock you down. Spiritually or otherwise.

David

9 Comments:

Blogger Michael J Stammer said...

David,

I just found Whisperings and your site via iTunes. Thank you for an uplifting respite!

I do not find your statement of who your are, your faith, and how you view your gifts to be offensive, "preachy" or in any way off base. We are who we are, we believe what we believe. I personally respect anyone who gives quiet testimony to that which defines them. For the record, I am not a Christian. I do, however respect another's beliefs and convictions when they are simply offered.

Let me offer this quote from Pat Riley, something his father said to him:

Every now and then there comes a day where someplace, sometime,
you simply have to plant your feet, stand firm and make a point about who you are and what you believe in. ~ Pat Riley, in "The Winner Within"


Taking a stand on anything will make someone uncomfortable. That is for them to deal with.

I think you are handling this with character and grace.

4:39 AM  
Blogger David Nevue said...

Hi Michael,

Thank you SO much for your response. I was really encouraged by it, particularly since you don't share my perspective in terms of my Christian faith.

I have always been aware that my statements might chase a few people away, but I think that's just part of being who you are sometimes. I mean, you can't stand up for anything without offending someone.

So it's good to hear such a positive comment from someone who doesn't necessarily agree with me and yet still respects my personal expression of faith.

I'd like to believe that many more people respond to my writings like you do rather than the other gentleman. Based on the emails I get, I think that's the case.

I certainly hope so.

Take care,

David Nevue

8:59 AM  
Anonymous darnesha said...

Hi, Mr. Nevue. I really loved that you posted that. I have been getting attacked like that from a girl who claims to be christian, but is gothic and says she's a vampire. She saw a post on my webjournal that was talking about gothicism and she ended up getting offended and degrading my character and telling me I'm not much of a christian myself, because I "judge" goths... But I am really glad you wrote that new post. I am glad I got to see how you handled that. Thank you so much.

8:24 PM  
Blogger Greg said...

David:

"Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you." (Matt. 5:11-12)

Press on, brother. I appreciate your work and your testimony.

Greg

11:49 AM  
Anonymous TamaraP said...

You responded with admirable grace. The enemy gets at us in so many ways, doesn't he? Even through an e-mail. I am encouraged that you did not let your fear keep you from sharing your faith with him.

5:23 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

David

If he does not like what you say, he can go away and read or listen something else.

I have to left you because I have to send an e-mail to all the web sites I do not like or that do not speak as I want and it will take me all day long :-)

Michael

11:20 PM  
Blogger Sally said...

Dear Mr. Nevue,
I just happen to run across your blog by accident today, and being musician myself, I am sorry to say I have never heard of you. I am also very religious and I was very intrigued when I read “I think the, ’enemy’ just took a shot at me.” I actually would have to say that is wasn’t really the enemy taking a shot at you as more it was someone expressively rejecting your faith. With some people, God knocks on their door (sort of speak) a hundred times, if necessary, and sometimes God only knocks once and It is that persons choice whether they want to open the door or not. That person, who left you the commit decided not to. You just gave him the opportunity to believe. God may just have been was working through you to get to that person.
The best thing for you to do in a situation, such as this, is to pray for him to have more chances in the future to believe. I would suggest that if he response again to not reply because every time he denounces the Lord he is sinning. He is not ready to hear the word of the lord, obviously, and there is nothing right now you can do except argue with him. Pray that maybe sometime in the future he will not only get the opportunity to believe but that he will actually start to.
A New Reader
Sally-ann Shiluk

1:44 PM  
Anonymous Howard K. said...

Just curious... who's the enemy? Was it the person who honestly gave you feedback or is it some "supernatural" entity.

P.S. Anytime you put "religious" thoughts down for others to read, it can be construed as being preachy.

4:12 PM  
Blogger Kim said...

Hi David, I just discovered your music on Pandora and wanted to say how much I enjoy it. It's also wonderful to read that you are a lover of Christ! Glory to God! Keep up the good work. The Lord bless you!

Howard K: The enemy he refers to is Satan, not the emailer.

11:23 AM  

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