I take great pride in being a hipster Christian. On any given Saturday you can always find me sitting at my favorite coffee shop reading Thomas Merton and listening to Sufjan Stevens on my MacBook. I'm such a hipster snob, last year I called U2, one of Christianity's favorite secular bands, the most overrated band in the world. You gotta have some major guts to dis Bono!
The other day, however, I borrowed The Joshua Tree from the local library, and now I'm starting to think that maybe I was wrong. While I still don't consider U2 one of my all-time favorite bands (Mindy Smith is still my main squeeze), I can't deny that The Joshua Tree is full of great melodies and beautiful lyrics.
First, there's "Where the Streets Have No Name." What a lot of people don't realize is this song is about how in Belfast, every one knows your income level based on what street you live on. So in this song, Bono desires to see the Kingdom of God, where it doesn't matter what street you live on, where everyone is equal.
Then there's "I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For:"
I believe in the Kingdom Come
Then all the colours will bleed into one
But yes I'm still running
You broke the obnds
You loosed the chains
You carried the cross
And my shame
And my shame
You know I believe it
But I still haven't found
What I'm looking for
For self-identified emerging Christians like myself, this verse perfectly resonates with us. We believe, and yet we're still searching.
My favorite track, though, is the last one, "Mothers of the Disappeared." They wrote this song after meeting mothers of children who either were killed or "disappeared" during the Salvadoran Civil War.
Midnight, our sons and daughers
Were cut down and taken from us
Heart their heartbeat
We hear their heartbeat
In the wind
We hear their laughter
In the rain
We see their tears
After taking the time to actually listen to The Joshua Tree, I take back what I said about U2.