This new genre of Christian music which includes heavy metal, hard rock, soft rock, jazz, hiphop, and whatever else Christian bands feel moved by the hand of God to play, is appearing more often in the press. I caught an article in the Austin American Statesman today about Jim Butt, who is organizing a festival here in Austin called "Power of the Cross Festival" which will be held this coming Saturday.
Jim Butt, a first-time concert promoter, believes that 40,000 people will attend Saturday's [festival.]
The free daylong Christian music event is the day before the Rolling Stones descend on Zilker Park. So, Butt figures, people will be in town looking for something to do. Why not hope for 40,000 to attend?
Um, yeah. I can see 40,000 Rolling Stones fanatics all standing around on Saturday asking themselves "what to do?" in Austin, Texas the day before the big Stones bash. The good news is, the festival is free.
"I just believe that many can come," he said matter-of-factly. "I have faith. It's a number God has given me."
This is a man who claims that God delivered him from a drug and alcohol addiction. A man who quit his job selling medical equipment and drained his savings and retirement accounts to organize what he hopes will be a "Christian South by Southwest." A man who will do anything God asks him to do, no questions asked.
Butt is spending $100,000 of his own savings and retirement money on the festival and expects a miracle or two:
"I wouldn't be surprised to see somebody get out of a wheelchair and walk," he said.
The prospect of glorifying God and sharing his faith with the city motivated Dale Smith to build a 9-foot-tall cross and wooden prayer panels where people will post their prayer intentions.
It would almost be worth attending this event for the visuals... and to read some of the "prayer intentions."
Vance Russell, senior pastor of Arise Christian Fellowship in North Austin, says his members will offer prayer and support to people who accept Christ on Saturday. He says members who have prophetic gifts will share messages from God in a special tent.That special tent sounds like it's going to be a blast. The festival has a website including a prayer for the success of the festival, including:
Jesus, we pray that your spirit will attract everyone to the festival that you want so that we don’t have to worry about worldly advertising techniques.
Father God, we pray for your presence at this festival. We would rather have less people and more of you, then [sic] more people and less of you.
Father, you know who you want to play at this festival so we pray that you will call forward the musicians with your anointing.
Our prayers are that the Lord of the harvest will release the labors and the provisions for the vision. We know God isn’t broke so we pray for more then [sic] plenty so that we will be able to fund this ministry long term.
Hopefully, God will bless those in the special tent with some proofreading skills.
(file under "a fool and his money are soon parted.")
Crossposted at B3