I was told a day or two ago that I “need to update.” I already knew that, of course, it was just a matter of deciding what to write specifically, since I had a lot of ideas and trains of thought going on.
We camped in “The Shire”, which is quite an appropriate name as the terrain really reminded me of The Shire. No hobbits or earthen homes with round doors, though. Since I work nights at FedEx, I volunteered to drive out there right after I got off work, in order to get in the gates early and get a good camp spot. Once I got there, most of the day was spent napping since I was exhausted from driving straight through (coffee was my friend during the drive). Eventually the rest of the crew (Sheryl, Seren, Doug, and Mark) got there.
Cool Hand Luke was the first very notable concert I saw. I caught a bit of them last year, but this time I saw their full show and wow.. they are amazing. The music is fabulous, of course, but their attitude and song content is what makes it so much better. They're quite humble guys, and totally serious about their faith and using their music as outreach. Some Christian bands are corny/fake when they say “we give all the glory to God”, but these guys go a step further to make it clear that they're not seeking glory at all, that their songs are for God's glory and that they're not just for entertainment, either. They weave Scripture throughout their songs in clever ways, too, rebuking and exhorting Christians at various times.
Their sincerity, integrity, and creativity will all combine to make them quite effective in their outreach, I think; whereas I honestly find a majority of Christian music that is supposedly geared to “outreach” just ends up preaching cliches to the choir. You can preview their new album on their site. I strongly recommend them.
we all follow
but we're standing still
reciting dead words
with hopeless zeal
we're all preachers
with our mouths closed
in sugar coats
Then OC Supertones was the other highlight of the first night. I don't know if they were at Cornerstone last year, but if so they were probably at Main Stage. Main Stage is Ok, but honestly it's so huge and wide open that it's not as much fun as, say, the Encore stages. Since they were playing the Encore 2 stage and I hadn't seen them in a while, I was looking forward to it. It started off quite nicely when Matt, the singer, came out and very authoritatively and loudly declared “starting now we are declaring WAR on all the kids who think they're too cool to dance!”, which got a good reaction out of the crowd. And dance we did. Skanking, moshing, getting the sweat of 20 or 50 people on you - great times. They played a fair amount of their older stuff, too, which is nice because it's more ska and thus easier to dance to.
Having gone for 8 years now, I think I'm enjoying the non-music aspects of the festival a lot more, even more than the music. It's just awesome to meet all sorts of fellow believers from across the nation (and world), and realize how diverse the Church really is. Plus, seeing the Church in action in a way that we don't, typically - being the Church, apart from any particular church building or church program/organization. It serves as a good refueling time and encouragement to continue to be the Church every day, not just at Cornerstone. At least that's how I view it. So the music is great and I still enjoy it, of course, but there's a lot more to it than just that. As it's been said many times before, I'm sure, “it was never just about the music.”
So if you haven't been before, I highly recommend you do whatever you can to make it at least once. I'm pretty sure this will/has become an annual tradition for me, so hopefully I'll see you there sometime.
I wanna hide beneath the pretty paint
I wanna be okay with everything
I wanna be transformed and stay the same
I wanna be dry in the rain
running in thie stupid circle
running in this stupid circle
our souvenirs won't be worth a single thing
and TRUTH will never be “in”