A band name is often a difficult thing to come up with. It has to strike the balance of being meaningful, catchy, provocative and cool all at the same time. I’ve had an easier time coming up with names for my kids than thinking of band names.
By the Mane was different, though.
I heard the song, “Like a Lion” by Daniel Bashta and it reminded me of something about God that is sometimes forgotten in our worship. God is not the white bearded old man in a distant mansion or a genie waiting to grant our wishes. A better comparison is that of a beautiful yet wild, and incredibly powerful beast. He’s not human, he may not even be friendly as we define friendly, but that’s what makes his love so amazing. It’s unlike anything else we could ever know. So many songs try to make God’s love out to be a familiar accessible of love, but Bashta went the other direction and quenched a thirst that I forgot that I had. A thirst for a God that was bigger than me. I couldn’t help but think of Aslan, and Mr. Beaver’s response to Lucy when she asks if Aslan is safe.
“Safe?” said Mr. Beaver; “don’t you hear what Mrs. Beaver tells you? Who said anything about safe? ‘Course he isn’t safe. But he’s good. He’s the King, I tell you.” ― C.S. Lewis, The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe
This might be one of the most overused C.S. Lewis quotes of all times, but I can’t help but reference it. We–like Old Testament Israel who wanted a human king–want to a tame God.
Why “By the Mane?”
By the Mane is a name that represents our desire to understand God as that wild, unpredictable being that is so far beyond our understanding it causes us to be on our guard–even fearful–around him. By the Mane means that we come to him on his terms. It’s a reminder that letting go is not an option, and we need to approach life with the perspective of living By the Mane! The best thing we can do is grab on for dear life, not because He’s safe…because He’s good!