Back when my iPod was full of mainstream rappers there was one thing that really made me love hip hop. It was the motivation it made me feel and how it got my blood pumping. Songs like Lose Yourself by Eminem and Motivation by T.I. are probably at the top of the list when you think of motivational songs. I loved Kanye’s The College Dropout and Lupe’s Food and Liquor because of the way those songs made me feel. They made it seem like if you pushed hard enough anything was possible. By listening to those songs you could identify with their struggle and that it is possible to push harder.

In 2010 when God convicted me to stop listening to mainstream hip hop, it was extremely hard. One of the main reasons I found it hard was because of the lack of motivational messages in Christian hip hop. Now when I use the term motivational, I’m talking about work ethic. I do believe CHH is motivational in breaking sin, worship, and digging deeper into biblical principals. CHH has helped me numerous times to find strength in God to overcome sin and to get me through difficult times.

The one thing I feel CHH avoided was talking about work ethic. I do understand the risk, artists don’t want to be labeled as cocky or get called out as being prideful. I feel the benefits far outweigh the costs. No matter what your message is, there will always be people who will be against it. You can count on it. Ideally talking about work ethic should be equally important as making a song on battling sin.

Why is work ethic so important to me? I was raised in a Christian home and all my life it was instilled in me – whatever you do, do your best. Everything I ever did my parents would look at it and say, “Is this your best?” or “You can do better.”. They instilled in me that whatever I did, I did it for the Lord and the Lord demands my full efforts.

“Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men” – Colossians 3:23

My work ethic sees highs and lows just like anything in life and sometimes you just need that extra push of motivation audibly or visually. Sometimes you need to hear or see someone else’s inspiration. The Bible talks a lot about working hard, laziness, and providing for a family. Proverbs 18:9 says, “Whoever is slack in his work is a brother to him who destroys.”. There are many examples on having a good work ethic in the Bible and when I first started listening to CHH I didn’t understand why this was missing.

It wasn’t until recently with artists like Christon Gray, Social Club, Sho Baraka and a few others who are starting to touch on the subject. F.E.R.N of Social Club says, “They say F.E.R.N why you go so hard? I tell them that I have no choice / until I have no voice.”. On Ali, Sho Baraka gives his perspective on striving for greatness. Christon Gray included the track Momentum on his last project Body Art. Gray states, “Listen you think this comes cheap? It costs everything to live this dream.”.

It is due to these artists that I believe CHH is on the verge of a new era. The quality of music is higher than ever before and people are working harder than ever to produce it. The bar keeps getting set higher and artists are sharing with us a glimpse on what it takes to actually work hard at something. They understand that making quality music is not easy and they have to put everything they possibly have into producing something special.

In our society motivational music about work ethic is needed more than ever. Too many people are sitting on the sidelines hoping for handouts or hoping their “prayers” will be answered when they do nothing on their part. As a generation we need to work harder. Working hard or getting money to support your family isn’t prideful. It’s what the Bible calls us to do.

“But if any man does not provide for his own, and especially for those of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever. ” – 1 Timothy 5:8

Do you think artists should include work ethic as a topic on more of their songs? Voice your take in the comments below.

15 Responses

  1. happy416

    Completely! A very well stated thought. What many people (more like A LOT) take for granted is work ethic, and what happens is, we turn it into “Well, I don’t have to do anything because I know God has my back”, and people just sit doing nothing expecting to gain something out of just sitting there, and while I dont condone “Living by faith” but I do believe the word says “Faith without works is DEAD” (James 2:14-26 is perfect example). It’s not about “That artist is talking about the work he has to do, He’s so cocky”. It’s the truth!! If you put the right amount of work into something then you reap out of it. It’s the same way with God, you spend time with him (Your work) you reap more out of him. I think a little more work ethic is needed to push us in the right direction in CHH.

  2. parkerconnell

    first off, i am a big fan of these articles you been posting recently. yall have been continually updating the website and its looking real good now, not only how it looks but also the music thats been posted has been increasing in quality. so i was just giving props to yall there. and second, i agree that chh isn’t too motivational. sure theres tons of hype songs, but when thinking of a motivational song the only ones that came to my head were “ali” by sho baraka & “keep on moving” by erick dayz. i hear a lot of songs talking about the struggle though

  3. djbrothersteve

    Just found this and I think that ‘Hey if you need work ethic motivation music there is plenty of it in CHH and if you need some motivational music that talks about over coming sin and living for God there is plenty”.  I guess it depends on where your mind set is. For me I just don’t like a dope or hype beat it has to be the lyrics and the flow also. The reason is I have a teenage son and a adult teenage girl I need something that makes you motivated to live for God because of the times we live in. I think CHH needs more remixes just to capture the ear and pull people in and also the reason why I say this is because of Trip Lee’s “All I need is 116” It made my son ask questions and research the Word and want to find out what is 116? So as a dad I was like “YES SER”!!! So to CHH artist keep it going.


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