There’s a fascinating article in today’s New York Times that has tremendous significance from a spiritual perspective. It’s about that fact that people die in the Philippines whenever they hear Frank Sinatra’s song, “I Did It My Way.”
I’m a minor Sinatra fan and sometimes play one of his albums on my iPod while cooking or cleaning around the house. But I’ve never liked “My Way.” It’s my least-favorite Sinatra tune – morbid, fatalistic, sad, openly arrogant, humanistic, and defiant. It’s about a man who is dying and, looking back over his life, feels good about the fact that he has done things his own way.
Yes, there were times, I’m sure you knew
When I bit off more than I could chew;
But through it all, when there was doubt
I ate it up and spit it out.
I faced it all and I stood tall and did it my way.
Well, there’s something about this song that releases an unhealthy, self-assertive energy in bars and karaoke restaurants in the Philippines. People get into fights and literally start killing others while the music’s going. This song has now been stricken from many nightclubs there because it fuels deadly fights. No one knows how many people have been killed during the singing of “My Way,” but the police have a subcategory of crime dubbed “My Way Killings.”
I don’t need to add that the “My Way” philosophy is the very essence of anti-Christian thinking. As believers, our aim is to please Christ in every way. We don’t come to the point of death and look back over our lives with fatalistic defiance. We want to be able to say, “I have finished the work You gave me to do.”
Our attitude is: “I did it His Way.”