Parodies Minister to Muslims in Australia
Thu., Jul. 31. 2014 9:43pm EDT
Last week, we wrote about a fan in Australia who uses ApologetiX and Christian parody music to minister to the mentally ill. You can read that story at http://apologetix.com/news/news-details.php?news_id=2727. This week, he sent us some testimonies about how the parodies are ministering to Muslims:
It was a wonderful mustard seed you planted when was you first started writing parody songs to make Bible studies you were part of come alive. What a huge, wonderful tree of blessing this has grown into, touching and providing shelter for many lives. But that's the nature of the kingdom of our Lord Jesus Christ, the fruit of His Spirit working.
Not long after Alex started to busk, it was getting closer to Christmas, and his busking customers started asking for Christmas carols/songs. This part of his repertoire was a bit limited. He rang me for help. I just happened to be driving through the suburb he was busking in. It was the first weekend I was allowed to drive again after a hip replacement (two days earlier and I wouldn't have been there and couldn't have got there).
I knew I would be singing/playing on my feet for at least an hour if I said yes. Was the new hip ready for it? After a few Christmas songs, a man came up and a bit sarcastically said that he bet we couldn't do an Elvis song. Because we had been singing/playing "Don't Be Fooled" regularly we immediately launched into "Don't Be Cruel." His mouth hung open for half a minute because he didn't expect the Christian, Christmas buskers to suddenly do Elvis. Then he sang with us. I then challenged him to sing a few Christmas songs with us, as we had done his Elvis, so he did.
It was only after that I learned that he was the Muslim, Halal butcher from the neighbouring suburb. Muslims singing Christmas songs because we also sang their request. Sang spontaneously only because we had been singing an ApologetiX song. Only Jesus can cause that sort of thing to happen.
In that same area the Salvos operated a café. While busking, Alex went there one day for their free community lunch. The leader, Graham, saw his guitar and invited him to play. He was happy for him to play popular songs as well as Gospel, thought it created atmosphere in the café. Alex told me about this, so one day I went there for lunch as well, curious how it all worked. Alex sang one song, then thrust his guitar into my hands. So I did a bracket, including a number of ApologetiX.
The songs certainly caught people's attention, Graham was fascinated, and I began to share my story with him. He told us we were always welcome to sing/play, so we have tried to make it a regular thing. Sometimes the whole café sings along with us. I have a lot of the lyrics on a flash drive and Graham puts them up on the big TV screen. I love it when the kids are on holidays and come with their parents, they dance, really get the joint jumping. They love "Dancing with the Ark." Other times it's more like us playing background music, but the lyrics can provoke lots of interesting conversations.
The second time I met Graham, he shared with me that the Sunday church that operated out of café had no musicians (used Internet through PA and screen). His immediate problem though was that an Iranian, Muslim couple had come to faith in Jesus and wanted to be baptised. This was going to happen at a nearby beach, but they would have no music.
Alex and I felt honoured to be asked to help, of course we would sing/play down at the beach. They also had a breakfast barbeque (we Aussies love our barbys) so we sang during breakfast and after ceremony as well. Although Mohammed was renowned for not liking music, Iranian Muslims are of a different persuasion. They love their music, know a surprising amount of Western music.
Quite a number of family, friends from local Iranian community came along. Most were not Christians but really connected when we sang. They, too, were fascinated that we were singing songs about Jesus, Bible stories to music, some of which they recognised. Lots of questions. Praise God a number of these have since become Christians.