The world’s gone gaping gaga over Gaga—even Starbuck’s recently made Lady Gaga their advertisement ploy to keep America drinking fraps and double shots. I think Starbuck’s was cooler without the Gaga shtick.
Recently, my husband and I had a layover in an unfamiliar city on our way to a conference. Just before retiring, we sleepily surfed the TV channels and landed on the Lady Gaga’s Monster Ball tour special. We watched several songs to see and understand the cultural hype. And by the way, I am not recommending this; but I want to share what I saw.
I found myself not gaga but gawking—what a show woman with some set of pipes! I loved the power of her voice and amazing ability to entertain. I immediately understood her popularity. Talented and filled with marketing genius, the shock queen has it all—on the surface.
The message that rang out during her performance resounded with crystal clarity, “Hey, growing up, people told me I was weird and ugly; but I have proved them wrong. I have climbed to the top, and you can too!”
Who doesn’t leave childhood with a few scars of rejection? Gaga masterfully connects with that pain with the promise of being understood and overcoming. That is exactly what people long for—someone to understand our hurts.
Another message: “I don’t want your money; I want your soul.” She repeated this line a few times while performing at Madison Square Gardens. This appeals to Gen X and Y—who, like the baby boomers of the 50’s and 60’s, wisely perceive the shallowness of materialism. They are seeking much more—and it helps to have an idol—someone who feels your pain but comes through it with worldly success.
The ironic part of the message is Gaga, otherwise known as, Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta, gives the impression that she is liberated from the love of money. She makes you think she will sing and put on a show for free because she yearns to connect with you…
I get why this appeals to young people. She isn’t driven by money, yet her groupies will pay any amount to see her. One person writes:
“I really wanted to see her [Lady Gaga] in concert, so it didn’t matter how much the ticket would cost. I was willing to lash out big bucks just to see her. I managed to get myself a ticket for $179, which along with convenience charges and other fees, came to a whooping $200. Very pricey, but it didn’t matter to me. I was going to see Lady Gaga in concert, and that all that mattered.”
According to answers.yahoo.com, concert tickets range from $79 – $357. Front row seats can be as expensive as $900 in some places.
As my generation says, the provocative pop star is “laughing all the way to the bank.” Forbes reports Gaga’s annual income as over $62 million and she is just beginning to make money… She is paid to be outrageous. But a few are beginning to think she has crossed the line with her afterbirth routine on Saturday Night Live recently. She will push the limits with shock and awe until the gold is mined out of the mountain.
Sorry Gaga devotees, money matters to the non-material girl. The wise marketer knows that outrage equals press equals money. You bet, it’s about money.
Gaga gets the cold cash AND the souls of her followers. This is the scary part…
Another fan writes, “I can’t wait to see her in concert again. Lady Gaga’s songs are stuck in my head, and I can’t stop listening to them. Her albums are a must-have, and I have both of them in my collection. I will never tire of Lady Gaga because it is just not possible. She is just that good. She is the kind of artist that will never fade away, so we will be seeing her around for years.”
Those star-struck Gaga wanna-bes can’t imagine her light may dim or burn out. They’re blinded by it—camping out for days for concerts and glimpses of the super star. She’s earning their money, time, and devotion.
American culture bears a plethora of true-life stories of flaming, short-lived, and often miserable lives of mega rock stars. Bigger than life people like Mama Cass Elliot, Janet Joplin, Jim Croce, Elvis Presley, Carl Wilson, Jim Morrison, Jimi Hendrix, Kurt Cobain, John Lennon burst on the scene suddenly with cymbals and fireworks and faded as quickly, often tragically.
How quickly we forget. Gaga will come and go, and someone else will rise to the top.
The most disturbing thing about Monster Ball was not the graphic sex antics on stage, for which we changed the channel, or the song for gays, “Born This Way.” It was the multiple references to Jesus. Lady Gaga talked about Him all the time.
At one point, she smeared red paint on her body to look like blood and said things like… Jesus died for you, bled for you. I bleed for you… I am the fount of bleeding for you… I am not quoting exactly, but this is close. The “f” word was peppered throughout her soliloquy. Then the queen of shock ran over to a literal fountain and put her red-painted arm under the running water to look like she was bleeding for you.
Mixture is prevalent today in many facets of life—adding “Jesus” to everything and anything in which we are involved. Some athletes mention his name because it has the power to change their imagines. Some genuinely believe, while others do not.
I remember Paris Hilton telling Larry King on CNN that she found God while doing jail time for drugs. She said, “It was a very traumatic experience, but I feel like God does make everything happen for a reason.” Only the Lord knows the sincerity of these words and heart change. Mentioning God and aligning with Him does change society’s opinion. Paris needed a come back strategy.
Maybe this mixture soothes the conviction of the Holy Spirit, who is relentlessly pointing humankind back to Creator God and Redeemer Jesus. But it is dangerous. God’s Word does not compromise on salvation. “There is a way that seems right to a man, but the end thereof is destruction” [Proverbs 14:12].
Sin has separated us from God, but provision has been made—not through Lady Gaga who hurts and bleeds for us—but Jesus who said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life” [John 14:6]. And true believers bear the fruit of repentance in their lives. They are transformed from darkness into light—new creatures—hating what they loved and loving what they hated.
Hebrews 5:14: “But solid food is for the mature, who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish good from evil.” As true followers of Jesus, our goal is to grow up by knowing His Word and exercising the ability to discern what is good and evil in this world. One of the signs of the end times is the blurring of these lines.
This should not happen to those who are trained to distinguish between the two. Those true followers of Jesus, youth and adults alike, will discern that her path is hell bent for destruction. The sad truth is that unless we are trained or warned, Gaga’s songs will lure and entrap innocents down the wrong pathway.
One of the last songs by LG gripped my heart, “Show Me Your Teeth.” I just reread the lyrics, and they are purely about sex. This is nothing new. Rock stars have sung about sex for decades; but during Gaga’s performance, what stood out was the calling of God upon Stefani Germanotta.
And I choose to think of her as Stefani, a real person with a mother and father and a soul longing for connection.
I love to picture people with their heaven-sent gifts serving the almighty Host of Heaven as true believers. That song showed me the princess/warrior side of a remarkable and talented young woman. Stefani was created in His image to give Him glory, to war for the side of good and light, to evangelize and stand for eternal purposes.
Her last words when the song ended, “Show me your teeth, Jesus.” I heard the dark forces within her making war with heaven. Feelings of grief and compassion and amazement washed over me.
Suddenly in a flash of the Holy Spirit, I become jealous for her life, jealous for her gifting to be used for God’s kingdom, jealous for the healing power of the Holy Spirit to cleanse her inward parts, jealous because the kingdom of darkness is wasting her life… I became eager for God’s restoration to be planted and take root before it is too late. She is on a swift road running away from her heavenly Father.
I also became angry at the devil, yet I know that reaction will not bring the Lord’s righteousness.
The power of God to rally, rescue, and redeem astounds me. How longsuffering, patient, loving He is. Now I pray for the lost princess/warrior who wants to fight for the rights of the underdog, who wants to climb to the top to hear someone say she’s done well, who wants the souls of followers to worship her alone.
You know, I am a warrior at heart too; and I have dedicated my life to heartbreaking causes: poverty, orphans, the forgotten Lost Tribes of Israel, Holocaust survivors—those whom the world has mostly overlooked. And I have witnessed redemption and restoration.
The soul of Lady Gaga is worth saving. The princess/warrior is showing her teeth for the wrong reasons—but she may be closer than we think. Behind the thin veil of performance, shock, and money lives a fragile, little girl lost.
I am in intercession that our youth will not be taken captive by her bewitching songs. I do not “war against flesh and blood, but principalities and powers in high places.” Fervent prayer will affect change.
I want Lady Gaga’s soul. I want the souls of our youth!
“And what do you benefit if you gain the whole world but lose your own soul? Is anything worth more than your soul?” [Matthew 16:26].