Music with a message

This past week, I’ve been listening a lot to 89.3 WYSZ Toledo, better known as YES FM (, a Christian Hit Radio Station servicing Northwest Ohio and Southeast Michigan. I was extremely grateful, when I moved north (way farther north than Toledo), to find out that I could take my favorite radio station with me, thanks to the Internet and live-streaming capabilities.

I can’t even remember when I began listening to YES FM. It’s been many years. Probably since I began driving and it caught the attention of my car’s antenna. I’ve always gravitated toward positive and uplifting music, perhaps because I’ve been a Christian for much of my life. I know a lot of people believe music is simply music and has no bearing on one’s psyche or actions. I disagree. And, I tend to think that the things we fill our heads and hearts with eventually get filtered out through our actions.

Anyway, what attracted me to YES FM, beyond it being a Christian station, was its playlist. Its playlist went beyond hymns and praise and worship and contemporary Christian tunes, to artists on the fringe, artists in the rock and hip-hop genres, and, in general, artists who could strike a chord with young people.

How could you not strike a chord with band names like Thousand Foot Crutch, Demon Hunter, Newsboys, Fireflight, Stellar Kart, Day of Fire and R-Swift? There’s absolutely nothing wrong with The Maranatha! Singers, mind you, but, come on, Paper Tongues? How cool and hip is that?

But, it’s not just the names of the bands. It’s their songs and the messages behind them that make for an excellent combination, especially when it comes to reaching out to our youth. Songs of hope, forgiveness, faith, desperation, grace and the like are set to rock and hip-hop beats.

I know what you’re thinking: “Christian rock? Give me a break.” But, God reaches people every day in a lot of different ways. I don’t think using rock music is beneath him. And, more than ever, our young people need positive influences in their lives, so why not Christian rock music? Why not moving and grooving songs that focus on Jesus Christ and the sacrifice he made for us?

This week is a Sharathon week for the station. As a listener-supported station, the deejays have been hard at work conveying to its listeners the importance of reaching our youth. YES FM isn’t just a radio station. It’s a ministry, and one that is set on winning the hearts of our youth for Jesus Christ. And, in today’s culture, our young people need all the love and support they can get. For some, that comes in the form of words and songs spoken and sung on YES FM.

I can’t think of a better cause to give to than that.

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