My two cents: Jennifer Knapp

The year was 1996. I was a freshman in college and my world was expanding. New places, new friends, new ideas, opportunities, challenges, music… Everything I had been taught or knew was being challenged from both without and within.

Many aspiring musicians and artists brought their guitars and original songs to our campus during that year and, among others, I was introduced to the sounds of Skillet, 100 Portraits, Jami Smith and Jennifer Knapp.

I came to love Jennifer Knapp’s sound from her independent CD “Wishing Well” and was ecstatic when Gotee Records released her debut album, Kansas. The year of its release I also began to learn to play guitar. In June of 1999, I performed Jennifer’s song “Trinity” at my home church on my black Fender DG-11E. To this day, Kansas remains one of my favorite albums.

In a recent interview with Christianity Today, Jennifer Knapp has publicly declared that she is living in a lesbian relationship. My heart was broken in reading the interview. Jennifer’s music has meant so much to me over the past 14 years of growing in holiness and this news has left part of my heart in shreds as if pulling a pocket off of a shirt.

My heart cries out with a want to respond, yet I do not know how. Privately, I have spent much time with my own guitar and my Kansas songbook, re-visiting the songs that I’ve so loved for the past 10+ years (see pic).

I still love the lyrics to Martyrs and Thieves which I will re-post here:

There’s a place in the darkness that I used to cling to
It presses harsh hope against time
In the absence of martyrs there’s a presence of thieves
Who only want to rob you blind
They steal away any sense of peace
Though I’m a king I’m a king on my knees
And I know they are wrong when they say I am strong
As the darkness covers me

Chorus-

So turn on the light and reveal all the glory
I am not afraid
To bare all my weakness knowing in meekness
I have a kingdom to gain
Where there is peace and love in the light, in the light
Oh I am not afraid
To let Your light shine bright in my life, in my life
Oh I… am, I…

There are ghosts from my past who’ve owned more of my soul
Than I thought I had given away
They linger in closets and under my bed
And in pictures less proudly displayed
A great fool in my life I have been
Have squandered till pallid and thin
Hung my head in shame and refused to take blame
For the darkness I know I’ve let win

(Chorus)

Can you hear me? (repeat 6x)

Well I’ve never been much for the baring of soul
In the presence of any man
I’d rather keep to myself all safe and secure
In the arms of a sinner I am
Could it be that my worth should depend
By the crimson stained grace on a hand
And like a lamp on a hill Lord I pray in Your will
To reveal all of You that I can

(Chorus)

There’s a place in the darkness that I used to cling to
It presses harsh hope against time…

Resist the darkness, cry out to God and cling to the hope of His truth, His gospel, and His justification, sanctification, and ultimate glorification.

In the absence of my own words, I would like to refer you to two posts: Thinking Out Loud’s April 15th post and a college friend’s Facebook note.

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4 Comments

Filed under Guitar.Instruments.Music

4 responses to “My two cents: Jennifer Knapp

  1. Pingback: Tweets that mention My two cents: Jennifer Knapp « A Ragamuffin’s Reflections -- Topsy.com

  2. That’s always been one of our favorite Jennifer Knapp songs too. I think Damian and I had the same emotional response as you guys. We know not to put much stock in Christian celebrities and their music, but it’s still a disappointment nonetheless.

  3. Brian

    You’re quite right, Gabby.

  4. paulthinkingoutloud

    Brian,
    Thanks for the link. Just this week I was asked to be part of a blog tour for a new resource on this subject which I feel is quite balanced. You can catch that here:
    http://paulwilkinson.wordpress.com/2011/01/13/turning-controversy-into-ministry-practical-steps/

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