Taylor Swift and the Power of Versatility

This post was originally written as part of the Daily Devotional series for Southland Christian church. It has been adapted and reposted here, with permission. To read or subscribe to Southland's Daily Devotions, click here.

Last week my social media feeds were all abuzz with pictures and videos from Taylor Swift's concert in Lexington. I'll admit, I was a little jealous of all my friends who took their wives/daughters/selves out for what was undoubtedly a phenomenal show. And T-Swift does know how to put on a show.

My wife and I have a love/hate relationship with Taylor Swift: my wife hates her, and I love her. We have both agreed that Swift is a gifted songwriter, but Erica just can't get past her eccentricities. The red lipstick, the dancing all the time, the acting like she's still surprised - every time - when she wins an award...it's all just too much for my bride to handle.

Me? I'm willing to put up with a few quirks for the sake of artistry. Make no mistake, Tay is an incredible songwriter; but she has also managed to cross genres with a level of success that very few other artists can boast. We all know that Elvis Presley was the King of Rock n' Roll, and the man knew how to handle a gospel tune or two. Michael Jackson was dubbed the King of Pop, Rock, and Soul; even then, however, the musical development from his first solo album in 1972 to his last in 2001 never strays too far beyond variations of pop evolution. Now hear me, I'm not trying to suggest that Taylor Swift is somehow a better or more influential artist than either The King or MJ - that would be foolishness; what I am suggesting is that she has been able to grow & adapt as an artist - with astounding success - in ways that few others have. Swift, in just 10 years, managed to completely swing the pendulum from being a young country starlet to a full-fledged pop princess.

She is both/and. It's an impressive feat, and it has solidified her status among the greatest American entertainers. Good on ya', Taylor.

To a much greater and glorious extent, the writer of the New Testament book of Hebrews makes a similar case for Jesus as the greatest High Priest, albeit without all the lipstick and dancing. We are told that Melchizedek [was] the king of Salem and priest of God Most High. He was the only priest who was also a king. When God established His covenant with Israel, He initiated a line of kings from the tribe of Judah, and a line of priests from the tribe of Levi. It was impossible to cross over between tribes and/or roles. You were on or the other...or neither. 

Jesus is both the High Priest of Heaven and King from the line of Judah. His very being allows Him to do what no earthly priest ever could. As the writer tells us, Here is the main point: we have a High Priest who sat down in the place of honor beside the throne of the majestic God in heaven. (Hebrews 8:1). What does this mean for us, that Jesus is both King and High Priest? It means we can worship Him with reverence today, for He is truly worthy; and it means we can approach Him with confidence today, knowing that we will receive mercy in our need.

DAN JACKSON

Dan is a pastor, author, and speaker. He is the founder and lead contributor for My Ordinary Faith and currently serves as a Campus Pastor for Southland Christian Church in Georgetown, KY.