Focus on the family President and CEO Jim Daly recently had the opportunity to interview an iconic figure in pop music, U2’s Bono. U2 is in New York City working on their latest album and Bono made time in his schedule to meet with Daly and talk about his family, his faith, and his charity work.
It was an eye opening interview that allowed Focus on the Family listeners to hear from someone whose practice of his faith is quite differently than your average American evangelical family.
Daly seeks through the interview to understand where Bono is coming from in his view of what Christianity is.
Bono has been married for over 30 years and he expounded on what he thought it took to make it that long with another person. He spoke of what he thinks love is supposed to look like – love looks for the “potential” in others and then seeks to help them reach their potential. In that sense, if both members of a couple are working to see their partner reach their potential, the marriage is much smoother than if the marriage is a one-way street.
Bono also expounded on his belief that the Christian faith must be active. Daly mentioned that his appreciation of Bono lay in Bono’s attention to “orthopraxy” over “orthodoxy”– the doing of the Word over the hearing of the Word. This is tied in to the most visible parts of Bono’s life as he is a man constantly at work to meet the needs of those less fortunate.
In fact, while as Daly points out, Bono is oftentimes viewed skeptically by the “orthodox” believers in the US, the work he has done for the less fortunate cannot be understated. Bono has been a tireless advocate of the poor, the sick, the hungry and those left shattered by war in Africa and other poverty stricken regions of the world. It would not be an understatement to say that Bono’s work for those less fortunate has saved hundreds of thousands of lives and made the lives of millions better through his charity work.
Bono also spoke directly to American evangelicals:
“Most of the 9 million lives that are now saved, HIV/AIDS sufferers, are paid for by the [United States]. … This should be shouted from the rooftops. This is a heroic American story. And I am here to thank the American people for that.
And I also want to thank the evangelical community for that, because it wouldn’t have happened without their leadership. Because they like myself, pestered George Bush and the administration, who actually deserve praise for starting this out… But you know, it was the evangelicals [that] did that.”
It was a terrific interview and very revealing on the life of a very public man. Bono has his blemishes and a simple google search would bring you other interviews that would not be as well received as this one from Focus on the Family. However, I leave it to each one of you to derive from his comments and his actions whether or not he is indeed a brother like Focus on the Family President Jim Daly believes him to be.
I’ll leave you with one last quote of Bono’s from the interview – this one deal with who Bono believes Jesus to be.
“Jesus isn’t lettin’ you off the hook. The Scriptures don’t let you off the hook so easily. … When people say, you know, “Good teacher”, “Prophet”, “Really nice guy” … this is not how Jesus thought of Himself. So you’re left with a challenge in that, which is either Jesus was who he said he was or a complete and utter nut case. … You have to make a choice on that.
And I believe that Jesus was, you know, the Son of God.”