So, Michael Jackson was buried(ish) on global TV in front of more than 20,000 in attendance at the farewell concert tour… eh, memorial service.
The television show… eh, memorial (I keep doing that) drew almost 31 million people in viewership. Now, now, before you MJ fans start holding up your sequenced-gloved pointer finger to Jesus shouting, “Number 1!” it was two million less than Princess Diana’s funeral and four million less than President Ronald Reagan’s.
- 19 television networks around the globe carried the thing! 19! I would be amazed, but hey, I can watch a car chase one five different networks from my couch, so not that impressive.
- It cost the city of Los Angeles more than $4 million. Well, how’s that whole California budget crisis going now, Governator?! At end of his term, I doubt “he’ll be baaaack.”
- The L.A. Mayor is asking the city to pay for it. No really, check the link if you’re so inclined. You know, here’s a thought. With all the talent fees that were represented on that stage at the Staples Center, maybe defer some of those costs… or better yet, take up a love offering. Yeah, that’ll happen. (P.S. Los Angeles has only raised $17,000. Keep it classy, L.A. We love it!)
- There is now a 1,500-word resolution in the U.S. Congress to call Michael Jackson a “global humanitarian.” Again, no really. Fitting this is coming from the U.S. Foreign Relations Committee. We really are the World, eh?
- And now, the lead spoke in the news cycle is who designed MJ’s suit fit for burial. Sigh. Do people really care about this mess? “Hey Mike’s mama? Who is he wearing?”
Okay, that was my rant. Now, for some Good News. If you were one of the 31 million who watched it, and some of the many more who scanned by one of the many channels… did you see Lionel Richie?
Since we know it was a concert, and a fancy speaking opportunity for Al not-so-Sharp-ton, Lionel made this thing what it was supposed to be – CHURCH!
My man solemnly took the stage, blew off the dust from one of hits back in the day with the great Commodores and sang… “Jesus is Love.”
As soon as those ivories began playing, I knew it! So, I’m sure, like so many others, my hands went upward and began getting my praise on! I don’t care the source. If Jesus glorified, you better recognize.
And if he can use an ass (It’s biblical, just sayin’), I’m positive he can use someone from Hollywood.
The point is this before we get to the entertainment portion of the post – and yes, that is the brilliant video from Lionel – while everyone else was posing for their camera angle, trying to get on American Idol and muggin’ for the millions watching TV, Lionel Richie understood what they needed – a word, a touch from God.
The Lord is good, a refuge in times of trouble. He cares for those who trust in him. (Nahum 1:7 NIV)
Sundry motives and opportunism set aside, there was some hurting people in that crowd. His fans, yes. His family, more so. His kids, definitely.
And among the paparazzi, the miserable profiteers (note the picture) and the panderers, I pray those kids heard Lionel Richie sing and saw him gesticulate to the heavens.
There was praise on that stage. There was emotion in his heart. And there was God in his mouth.
Jesus is love… and he will never let you down. Hit it, Lionel.