Blessed are the Meek: the Bono edition

“Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.” Matthew 5:5

My husband played a short clip from facebook the other night, an interview with Bono where he was speaking frankly about his faith. Here’s the clip, and following it, the full interview:

Short clip – 2:20 long

Entire interview with RTE News Ireland (about an hour long)

Hearing Bono’s voice caught my attention immediately.  We both watched then said, “WOW. What WAS that?” Bono has never hidden his Christianity, though it’s revealed in ‘mysterious ways’ throughout the majority of U2’s released music. And he’s definitely had problems and struggles in his life; in other words, he’s a sheep like the rest of us.

One of my facebook friends posted the short version and I saw it in my own feed again just the other day (the interview seems to be catching some conservative Christian attention on facebook months after it aired on Ireland’s RTE News). I was drawn to comment on the video at my friend’s post, marking how it made me cry and was encouraging. But I began wondering to myself: just why was it encouraging?

Bono Vox: the good voice

I think back to initially hearing Bono’s speaking voice when my husband cued the video: I expected to hear something about helping others – it’s become his niche, being involved in international humanitarian aid. But to hear that familiar, lilting voice start to speak so frankly about who he believes Jesus is? That triggered a Holy Spirit response in me: tears started. I felt like I was experiencing a moment outside of time – it was a true Greek “KAIROS” moment.

I’m interested in what Bono has to say, no matter what it is, partly because he’s one of the coolest rock stars ever to grace a stage; but also because he’s been a sort of patron saint to my artist soul since about 1992, when I started listening to every interview I could get my ears on, and reading all he wrote – mostly about the process of making music because those stories encouraged my own art-making. In this recent interview, I heard my friend and Savior, Jesus, spoken of in a way that shared the truth of who he is to ME, not just to this rock star. That was just WOW. It was a breath of fresh air. It was a confirmation, to use an anglo-catholic term, of my own need to have my faith shared and known. Someone else might experience the Living God in a way that my soul understands, that speaks my soul’s language, in a way.

Bono the Meek…

Bono is honest and humble in this clip – in a word, MEEK. I realize now that I was quietly wowed by his honesty and humility. It’s encouraging because he doesn’t have to say any of this. He certainly doesn’t have to believe any of it, but he’s so matter-of-fact and easygoing about his trust in God: it’s just a part of who he is. He’s lived and been around the world’s block a few times. He certainly has more privileges and also more limitations as “celebrity” than your average sheep. But he’s calm and unsparkly about Jesus. It’s refreshing to find a public Christian who’s not judgmental or patting themselves on the back with their fantastic faith. Billy Graham always made me cry with his humility, too, for what that’s worth (theology aside, the humility was genuine). And I think that’s the compliment I want give to this rock star right now: that the Holy Spirit spoke within me as Bono shared his faith.

“But when the Helper comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth, who proceeds from the Father, he will bear witness about me.” ~John 15:26

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