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What About Us?
A Quick Music Discussion Guide for Parents
08/29/2017

Dynamic ImageMain Point: When we are exposed to the brokenness of this world, we can often look to others to fix things. As believers, our hope comes from Jesus. He calls those who are His to stand up and bring His love into the darkness of this world.

Vital Info Before You Get Started: The following info should help you contextualize this very popular song so you can have a great discussion about it with your kids.

  • IMPORTANT NOTE TO PARENTS: We at The Source for Youth Ministry believe that certain elements in our youth culture can serve as good discussion jump starters with students. At the same time, we would never hope to introduce teens to a negative influence that they haven’t already encountered. This balance is a delicate one. In our experience most teens, churched and unchurched, keep pretty current with music and music videos like this one. Thanks to YouTube, MTV.com, and iTunes, the most popular music videos and songs are free to access only a click away. If you decide to use this, do so by catering it to fit your family’s needs.

  • Pink has not released an album since 2012, choosing instead to collaborate with other artists instead of dropping her own music. In the first release off her upcoming album, Pink presents what has been called a surprisingly upbeat ballad. The rest of the album will release in October 2017.

  • Some of Pink’s other music has some swear words in it, so be wise in exposing your kids to this song. While she is relatively clean, parents should be discerning about what music they share with their kids. Her music is usually catchy and popular, so many teenagers will be familiar with it.

  • Don’t appear as if you have a “canned” discussion in your head and rattle off questions like a teacher giving a pop quiz—your kids get enough of that in school. This is a guide, primarily—not a verbatim script. Just familiarize yourself with the content here and start a conversation in the most natural, unforced way you know how.

Introducing the Song: Pink comes back on the scene with a song that appears to focus on the world we live in and how she feels let down by it, yet is willing to fight. As Pink encounters the realities of this broken world, she looks inward asking the question, what about us? Listen to this song and consider how often teenagers feel like this world is letting them down, and what that might mean for their generation.

The Music Video: The music video can be viewed for free at
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=987xHnVfRI4

Song Lyrics:

We are search lights, we can see in the dark
We are rockets, pointing up at the stars
We are billions of beautiful hearts
And you sold us down the river too far

What about us?
What about all the times you said you had the answers?
What about us?
What about all the broken happy ever afters?
What about us?
What about all the plans that ended in disasters?
What about love? What about trust?
What about us?

We are problems that want to be solved
We are children that need to be loved
We were willing, we came when you called
But man you fooled us, enough is enough

What about us?
What about all the times you said you had the answers?
What about us?
What about all the broken happy ever afters?
What about us?
What about all the plans that ended in disasters?
What about love? What about trust?
What about us?

What about us?
What about all the plans that ended in disasters?
What about love? What about trust?
What about us?

Sticks and stones they may break these bones
But then, I'll be ready, are you ready?
It's the start of us, we cannot, come on
Are you ready? I'll be ready
I don't want control, I want to let go
Are you ready? I'll be ready
And now it's time to let them know

What about us?
What about all the times you said you had the answers?
What about us?
What about all the broken happy ever afters?
What about us?
What about all the plans that ended in disasters?
What about love? What about trust?
What about us?

Three Simple Questions (with Answers You May Be Looking for):
    Q: What was the main message in Pink’s song?
    A: She is looking around at the realities of this world and wondering if anyone is thinking about the impact their choices have on others. She feels betrayed by those in authority and is wondering who will fix things.

    Q: What does it mean when the song says we are problems waiting to be solved and children that need to be loved?
    A: Pink is recognizing that something is wrong with humanity, and she is making big statements here. She acknowledges that we need love and we are not finding it where we are looking.

    Q: When Pink asks are you ready and replies with I’ll be ready what is she asking about being ready for?
    A: It appears she is ready for real change, and is ready for action to make that happen. It seems to be intentionally ambiguous so the listener can decide how to respond.

Where to Take It from Here: Wherever it feels natural. If these questions lead to a longer discussion on the topic, wonderful! (There is a guide just after that paragraph that helps you do just that.) If your kids are barely uttering grunts, don’t get discouraged – the next time it feels right, try out another song. Keep engaging them.

For Deeper Discussion:
(If your kids seem into diving in deeper and looking at what the Bible has to say on the subject, the following discussion guide can help take you there.)

Want help getting your teenager engaged in conversation? CLICK HERE for a helpful article from our "Parenting Help" page providing you with 3 Essentials to Talking with Today's Teens.

Transitional Statement – Say something like this:
Listening to Pink, we can think about how living in a broken and messy world means there will be times when we will be frustrated with the things that are happening. Pink seems to want someone who can come and fix things, someone who can come and set everything right. However, when we put our focus on what others have done or are doing, we can miss out on what God might be doing. Let’s talk about what perspective might be helpful and what you and I are called to do in response to the challenges we encounter.

More Discussion Questions:
  1. ASK A FEW FAMILY MEMBERS: This song is a slower, ballad type song. What are some slower paced songs that you enjoy?

  2. HAVE ALL YOUR FAMILY MEMBERS ANSWER: Pink got her nickname from a character in a movie she identified with. What is a nickname you’ve been given or if you do not have one, who is a character in a movie that you would say you identify with?

  3. ASK A FEW FAMILY MEMBERS: What do you think Pink sees in the world that caused her to write this song?

  4. ASK A FEW FAMILY MEMBERS: What does it feel like when someone breaks your trust?

  5. ASK A FEW FAMILY MEMBERS: In what ways is the world made of billions of beautiful hearts? In what way might someone see things differently?

  6. Read the following passage from the Bible:

      Psalm 25:1-4

      O Lord, I give my life to you. I trust in you, my God! Do not let me be disgraced, or let my enemies rejoice in my defeat. No one who trusts in you will ever be disgraced, but disgrace comes to those who try to deceive others. Show me the right path, O Lord; point out the road for me to follow.

  7. ASK A FEW FAMILY MEMBERS: In this passage, he starts by saying that he gives his life to God. Why do you think people have a hard time giving their life to God?

  8. ASK A FEW FAMILY MEMBERS: What does it look like to really trust God in uncertain times?

  9. ASK A FEW FAMILY MEMBERS: Who is someone who seldom lets you down? What does this passage say about how often God will let you down?

  10. ASK A FEW FAMILY MEMBERS: The Psalm says that God can be trusted and will not let you be disgraced when you hope in Him. How can knowing that change your perspective on this world?

  11. ASK A FEW FAMILY MEMBERS: In what ways is this world not on the right path? Why do you think that is?

  12. HAVE ALL YOUR FAMILY MEMBERS ANSWER: How can you make sure you are hearing God as He points out the right road to follow?

Wrap Up:
During this time we listened to Pink’s new song. We heard her sing about the uncertainty she is aware of as she comes to encounter our broken world. She taps on the potential of humanity when she says, we are search lights, we can see in the dark / we are rockets, pointing up at the stars / we are billions of beautiful hearts. It’s an upbeat and optimistic start that takes a strong turn when she points out the disappointment she has encountered.

It is easy to resonate with Pink’s struggle of this brokenness of this world, though there are aspects of it that should be talked through. If we are problems waiting to be solved, then who will be the one who solves them? History is wrought with examples of those who have promised to bring healing but in the end humanity is always left wanting.

So, where should our hope be? If we place our hope in humanity or world systems, we will end up where Pink has found herself. Take a moment and consider this question: How would Pink’s song be different if she knew God was good and was working in this messy world?


(Pause and give them a moment to consider this question.)

Pink never gives an answer to her powerful questions, but what do you think Pink would say is the answer she is seeking? Do you think she knows?

(Pause and give them a moment to consider this question.)

Speaking for myself, it’s far too easy to have the mindset that says others should fix things and help us have the best life possible. The reality is that God has invited us to put our hope in Him as the one who holds it all together. While we cannot always see what God is doing, we can trust His character no matter the circumstances.

The question remains of whether or not we are ready to stand up and do our part to bring His Kingdom to this world. Jesus prayed for this in the Lord’s Prayer, and we are called to bring His message of love and restoration to the broken world. God is doing His part, but the question here is what about us?


CLOSE IN PRAYER

Written by Rob Chagdes

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