I have now been to a grand total of three concerts that did not involve classical music: Muse (in Chicago), Elton John (Grand Rapids), and now Maroon 5 (Busan). And last night Maroon 5 knocked even some of my favorite Beethoven performances out of the water.
The energy was more than palpable—it was like sustenance. Koreans, I might add, are crazy about glowsticks. I’m not sure if it was the tomahawk motion with which they used them to cheer or the flashing Minnie Mouse ears everyone was wearing, but the auditorium visually pulsated with the beat of the music. The glowstick-carriers were, however, baffled when Adam sang She Will Be Loved with James accompanying on acoustic.
Anyway, as soon as Maroon 5 hit the stage, the place was a madhouse.
Or rather, as soon as the shockingly sexy Mr. Levine took the stage, the Busan-ites in the auditorium transformed from subway-riding automatons into screaming maniacs. He was our oxygen for two hours and we used it to scream ourselves hoarse, to dance and sing through every one of his songs. He, in all his slim-hipped dramatic-cheek-boned glory, was the drum major of it all, using the mic stand as his baton, half-dancing half-charging across the stage with trademark Adam-swagger. His charisma failed oozed from the stage and we lapped it up. And it was glorious.
So glorious that all of sudden I realized: this is what worship is supposed to be like.
So, why isn’t it? Does this worship cost us less? Or do we worship charisma more than actual authority? Jesus had authority, but “he had no beauty or majesty to attract us to him, nothing in his appearance that we should desire him.” So, Adam Levine is the Antichrist.
I’m totally kidding! I still enjoyed every minute of the concert, but it confused me a lot about the roots of worship. We are so good at worshipping. Look at concertgoers, or sports fans, or at Pinterest for heaven’s sake! Worship comes more naturally to us than almost anything else. We love to worship, to obsess, to throw ourselves into a maniacal crowd of people and get lost in the meaning for the crowd. We pay money to worship, spend time worshipping; it’s practically the human hobby.
So why is it so hard to worship the right Person?