Tuesday, April 1, 2014

What I’ve Learned from Lady Gaga: It’s Best Not to Live for the Applause

It’s kind of hard to say I don’t listen to much mainstream music when Lady Gaga somehow falls into the teaching category.  I do station hop on the way to work, so that explains how I heard Lady Gaga singing “I Live for the Applause.”  I used to be in drill team; catchy dance beats grab my attention, and I will stop and give them a listen.  If the lyrics aren’t hugely questionable, I might rock out in the car a bit.  The lyrics that caught my attention are not super complicated or intelligent, but here we go:

I live for the applause, applause, applause
I live for the applause-plause
Live for the applause-plause
Live for the way that you cheer and scream for me
The applause, applause, applause

I determined two things from these lyrics immediately:  Lady Gaga is popular because she so very much represents this generations’ need for approval; Lady Gaga does not have children. 

Let me explain:  In our culture of immediate response and gratification, it’s not hard to live for the applause.  Instant approval is just a click away as we look at our Facebook and Twitter feed, blog comments, email messages.  I’m not immune to this.  Outside of the digital culture, I sometimes look at parenting as something my kids should applaud me for.  The wiping of bottoms and feeding of babes become jobs I want constant thank yous and accolades for instead of appreciating that the long term commitment is the payoff. 

There are many downsides to living for applause, but one is that it makes me thankless.  When not receiving thanks for jobs I should count myself lucky to have, I stop having a grateful attitude.  This leads to me not being happy, content, and forgetting how good I have it.  Expecting thank yous from everyone else makes me forget how to give thanks. 

Biblically, living for applause is not encouraged.  With treasure in Heaven, we’re to consider ourselves slaves to God and others, grateful for what we have waiting, blessed and happy for what we have now.  An attitude of gratitude definitely gives me more joy than waiting for the chorus of praise from others.

So my advice to Lady Gaga is: don’t ever have children if you REALLY need applause constantly, and don’t become addicted to other people’s approval.  The one who died for you has given all you’ll ever need.

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