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February 18, 2011

Gaga, Snoop Dogg, the Grammys and God

'Believing that God wants you to be famous actually improves your chances of being famous.'

Rock reporter Neil Strauss, writing for The Wall Street Journal, has interviewed many celebrities through the years, noticing how many of them claim some sort of faith in God. That's not unusual, but through further analysis of his interviews, Strauss concludes that "believing that God wants you to be famous actually improves your chances of being famous."

He notes interviews with Lady Gaga, Snoop Dogg, Christina Aguilera, Eminem and others as he studied his previous interviews and analyzed the "God comments."

"Before they were famous," Strauss writes, "many of the biggest pop stars in the world believed that God wanted them to be famous, that this was his plan for them, just as it was his plan for the rest of us not to be famous. Conversely, many equally talented but slightly less famous musicians I've interviewed felt their success was accidental or undeserved—and soon after fell out of the limelight."


I cast my vote with Theologian Stanley Hauerwas of Duke University; "We don't get to make up Christianity. We receive it, not create it." Hawerwas also stresses that believing in God in general is not important or interesting. It is when you get specific, what God? It seems to me that many entertainers create the god who relieves them of accountability for their conduct, a god who will obey them.

Could they (Snoop, Gaga, etc.) be vessels made for ignoble purposes?

I wonder how much of that comes from the belief that God wants them to be famous eliminating, or at least easing, what many might consider to be compromises in the name of their faith? If you believe God wants you to be famous, it might be easier to do things you wouldn't otherwise do in pursuit of that fame and believe it is blessed by God for that purpose.