Hi everybody. Jen Hatmaker here, your host of the For the Love podcast. Buckle up and welcome to the show. We’re in a series called For the Love of Facing Your Fears. Today’s conversation with our guest was just super special. We went 40 minutes longer than we had planned because the conversation was so rich and so full and we barely scratched the surface. We’re talking about a topic near, dear, and personal to me today, which is facing the fear of questioning or even departing from a faith that you’ve always known.
Now, Those of you who have been with me in our little For The Love community here for a while have seen the windy, up-and-down relationship I’ve had with faith systems and organized religion. I’ve asked hard questions. I’ve challenged my own beliefs, reshaped, reevaluated, and reexamined. So trust me when I say; anyone who was in that space doing this hard and sometimes scary work of testing the boundaries of faith, you have me standing firmly behind you and cheering you all the way. You are going to love today’s episode. Get somewhere where you can listen and pay attention.
My mid-nineties Christian pals listening will certainly remember the contemporary Christian band Caedmon’s Call. They had a sort of innovative folk alternative rock sound. There was just nobody like Caedmon’s at the time in the genre; a soundtrack for that generation, truly. Derek Webb was an absolute pillar of the band. He was the Songwriter and lead guitarist. Caedmon’s Call got ten GMA Dove Award nominations, three wins, and six number-one Christian radio hits, for about a decade. In 2003, Derek left Caedmon’s Call to pursue a solo career.
One thing I love about Caedmon’s Call is that they were dubbed a thinking Christian band, and Derek’s lyrics, in particular, contributed to that. Highly introspective, led to lots of deeper conversations. Certainly, all of his music post-Caedmon’s Call is in that space. I know it’s kind of a buzzword now, but before the term “deconstruction” was kind of a part of the zeitgeist, this was Derek’s experience. He was trailblazing this for us in a lot of ways, and he reexamined his faith in a pretty impactful way. He doesn’t identify with some of those evangelical labels any more.
I love to hear him talk about this. Derek’s shaking things up which I understand. I’m not going to steal the thunder from the conversation but just this year at the Dove Awards, he made quite a splash. He attended wearing a dress along with queer singer Grace Baldridge and drag queen Flamy Grant. If you were anywhere near Christian social media, you saw this. It’s a lovely conversation and kind of a beautiful, inclusive intention around that peaceful disruption. We talk about everything. Evolution of beliefs. We talk about the Christian music industry. We talk about the label “Christian” as a marketing term. We talk about what it means to fail, what it means to reexamine, what we keep, what we hold. This episode is packed. This could have been three episodes, which is why it’s longer than normal. I promise you, it’s worth every single second. Without any further ado. I hope you love this conversation with the delightful Derek Webb as much as I did.
MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE:
Aaron Tate’s Website
Second Baptist Church
She Must and Shall Go Free – Album by Derek Webb
Jars Of Clay
The Prayer of Jabez
Wedding Dress by Derek Webb
Grace Point Church
The Jesus Hypothesis
Boys Will Be Girls Music Video
Grace Semler Baldridge
Flamy Grant Instagram
Drag Queen at Christian Music Awards Sparks Backlash (Newsweek Article)
The For the Love Podcast is a production of Four Eyes Media,
presented by Audacy.