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Chance the Rapper’s Grammy performance endures

The rapper’s performance became much more than leading worship — it started conversations.   |   Courtesy of Creative Commons

 

Chance the Rapper’s performance at the Grammys has been viewed over 1 million times on YouTube and shared over 100,000 times on Facebook. Chance, who is open about his Christian faith, led worship on stage during his performance. His performance left the country in great awe, especially Christian demographics, and also sparked interest in what message was portrayed, as well as whether or not his performance was effective from an evangelical standpoint.

Lifestyle of Credibility

Chance does not take credit for the first time a celebrity has given thanks to God when receiving their award. Nor is it the first time that people of prominence have used their platform to start conversations about God, whether through songs, art or even in sports. However, it seems more often than not their lifestyle does not align with they say and therefore becomes another perfunctory statement. Chance’s performance, on the other hand, was different from the norm. His lifestyle matches up to what he is preaching. Just this past week, Chance donated $1 million to Chicago public schools.

“I think if the person’s performance is consistent with his or her lifestyle, then it can be effective,” said Dave Keehn, department chair of Christian ministries.

Keehn emphasized Chance has the platform, and he is good at what he does, hence the Grammy. People recognize his talent and the message which makes it more appealing and not contrary. Because Chance validated who he is, people are more open to considering the message.

The Conversation

Now that Chance has validated his credibility through his talent, he comes with more more than a simple message. He has become a conversation starter. The platform has limitations to the extent of how he communicates his message. Chance has opened up a door, leaving the listeners to engage in fruitful conversations. Keehn stated that the platform, or even Chance’s performance, will never result in deeper levels of promoting life change, but it still becomes a talking point.

Due to his performance, people have begun sharing, commenting, liking and hearing about what Chance has said about his faith. He sparks dialogues such as the one Keehn and I had. Chance used his platform effectively because he took advantage of the his public of his platform and inspiring others. He opened doors for people to exchange ideas and share their thoughts with one another about the message, and that in itself counts as evangelizing.

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