Christian teens say they’ll feel comfortable inviting non-Christian friends to hear bands that, like Flyleaf, have had success on mainstream as well as Christian charts. Flyleaf’s videos have played on MTV and VH1. They’ve topped online fan polls and had songs included in games such as Guitar Hero 3 and Rock Band.
Before a recent concert in Charlotte, N.C., Decision spoke with lead singer 27-year-old Lacey Mosley about her testimony, as well as the band’s excitement at participating in the Rock the River Tour.
Q: What was your life like before you became a Christian?
A: I was an atheist. My life’s mission was to make people understand how stupid it was to believe in God. I felt like they were limiting their freedom by avoiding all these bad things that were so fun.
I was a bad influence on a lot of people. But those bad things I was encouraging people to do were destroying my life, too: dark music and drugs and hanging out with people who always had something bad to say about their family or were always picking fights.
Spiritually, it was super damaging. We see what hurts our body, our emotions or our mind, but we don’t always understand when we are hurting our spirit. I was hurting mine, and I felt empty inside.
I woke up one morning at age 16 and decided to commit suicide. I had thought about it a million times, but this day I resolved to do it. But this same day, my grandmother forced me to go to church.
Q: What happened at church?
A: The preacher pretty much started to tell my life’s story. He spoke to everything that was going on in my life. And then he said, “There is a suicidal spirit in the room. Please come up here and let us pray with you.”
My hair stood up, and I thought, I’m not going up there. So I didn’t. When they dismissed the service, I started to walk out the door, but an older man who was a deacon in the church caught me and asked to speak to me. He said, “The Lord wants you to know that even though you’ve never known an earthly father, He will be a better Father to you than any earthly father could ever be.”
I didn’t know my father, but I thought this was a coincidence. I had purple hair and wore a rock T-shirt so I thought, He probably just assumes that I don’t have a dad.
“Can I pray with you?” he asked. “God knows all the pain that is going on in your heart. Jesus died to take your pain away, and He wants to heal that pain.” Every time he said pain, my heart broke. There was so much of it in me.
We started to pray, and I felt God’s presence in a powerful way. I also felt the sin in me, all the things that I had tried to justify. If God had cast me away in that moment, it would have been right. I would have said, “Amen.” Standing in the presence of God, I understood that unless we recognize our sin and repent from it and agree with Him that, “Yes, that’s wrong”–and then let Him dress us in something different–we can’t mix with His purity. It just won’t happen. It can’t happen, because God is so pure.
Q: What issues do you see young people dealing with today?
A: One of the issues that breaks my heart is that young adults are knowingly and unknowingly abusing God’s purpose for sex. This robs them of the passionate joy and freedom that God intends within purity and marriage. Girls have no idea how valuable they are. They don’t understand about the value of “guarding their hearts” or the danger of “casting their pearls before swine.”
So many of them are in physically abusive relationships. They have become so numb gathering up highs in the flesh that they have resorted to cutting themselves just to feel something real. Some do it for attention, yes, but it’s still an indication that they want and need help.
Q: I understand that you pray for your audiences before you play. What do you pray about?
A: First, we pray for ourselves, that we’ll have clean hands and pure hearts, and that we’ll be prepared to have people shout and scream and we’ll still have the right heart about it–not to take any glory for ourselves.
We also pray that the Holy Spirit would come in the same powerful way that He did when I was saved. Jesus said, “If I am lifted up, I will draw all men to me.”
So as we worship and praise, we pray that the Holy Spirit would fall on the whole room and on the people. And we pray that the Lord will continue to go with them after the concert and that they will recognize that the Lord is pursuing them. And also that He would break off chains and bring healing and do everything the Holy Spirit does.
Q: What is your prayer for the Rock the River Tour?
A: We’re praying for Franklin Graham’s message to be in line with what the Holy Spirit wants to say, and also that our performance and the songs we pick will be in line with what the Spirit wants. And I know that Christians may be there who don’t understand what we do. But I think we have an important message to bring to the Christian audience, because without the prayer of the Body of Christ, we are in a dangerous place. We need prayer. So we want Christians to catch the vision for what we are doing so they will pray with us.