On Fertile Sound
Standing in front of a packed revival crowd, Justus (b. Brandon Randall) jumps down from the pulpit and begins to powerfully recite his poetry over keyboard melodies and pulsating drums. He speaks with poise of Michael Jordan in the fourth quarter, and the congregation is captivated from the first line. When asked about his fluid delivery, he shakes his head as if I were talking of someone else and responds, “I can’t tell you how it comes out the way it does; God just takes over me.”
Listening to his stirring rhythmic rhetoric that covers topics ranging from Herod to hip-hop culture, it seems like he and his partners, Isaiah (b. Reese Washington, Jr.) and Enock (b. Brandon Hall), founders of Church Cats Music and collectively known as the Church Cats, are on their way to a take over something themselves—the urban/contemporary gospel genre. Their music is relevant, and their message is a breadth of fresh air in a time where sex, money, drugs, did I mention sex, are the popular items of focus.
“We are determined to show young people that godless, unwholesome living is not cool, despite what many of these artists say,” exclaims Justus. “What these artists are failing to show young people are the destructive consequences of reckless living—teen pregnancy, drug addiction, jail, diseases, calamity, and death.” His genuine concern for today’s youth can be felt in his tone and seen in his eyes.
After only a few moments of conversation, it was evident that his focus was far from pimped-out rides or video vixens. In fact, his focus was not even was not even on earth; his passion and energy are concentrated on advancing the Kingdom of Heaven. “We make Kingdom Music!,” he proclaims with excitement. “We represent the Kingdom of God and his values. And we want to glorify him with our music, our words, and most of all, our actions; that’s our mission.”
To some, the daunting task of changing the course of an entire generation seems more impossible than one of Tom Cruise’s assignments, but don’t tell that to these young men. “We believe that through Christ, we can do all things,” he states exuding with confidence. “We are fully committed to fulfilling our mandate, which is to proclaim the Good News and teach Jesus’ commandments of love, mercy, purity, and goodness to the young and old.” In an era where lawlessness, violence, corruption, and immorality seem to be out of control, it is hard to argue that there is not a need for what the Church Cats bring; hopefully we will see the fruits of their labor.