Music at Mars Hill is a weekly column by Luke Larsen that seeks to find God amidst the newest trends in both mainstream music and independent music.
Big K.R.I.T. is a southern rapper whom I have a lot of respect for. He’s been putting out free mixtape after free mixtape, and the excellent 4eva N a Day is his newest. The album walks us through a life in the day of K.R.I.T.—his thoughts from his first moments of morning consciousness to when he puts his head down to find rest at night. Each soulful track is a peak into his real life—a peek into his worries, doubts, hopes, struggles, and desires.
At the album’s center, and also depicted in the album art, is “Package Store,” a song about addiction, hypocrisy, and temptation. K.R.I.T. paints the picture of pulling up to a package store (or “liquor store” for us West Coasters) one night and seeing a preacher he recognizes conducting himself in a less-than priestly fashion:
Just the other day when I was out at the store
Saw a preacher hella creepin’, trying to bang on a ho
That same mother****** used to bang on my door
Hollering ’bout donations for cause ’cause collections is low
Although K.R.I.T. is disgusted by the preacher’s behavior, he finds himself unable to judge. He sees the same struggle going on within himself. The album art depicts himself as a kid with a bottle of liquor to his side. The kid is looking toward a church and a strip club that sit side by side; he’s seemingly baffled by the decision before him. Although the extremes presented here may not be something we deal daily, the album expresses the poignant idea that in a single day we are presented with the all the big choices that reveal our inner character: between faithfulness and lust, truth and lies, heaven and hell, life and death. None of us are free from these choices—not preachers, not rappers, nor anyone else. As K.R.I.T. says in the opening track “8:04 am,” one day can make all the difference:
What a difference a day makes
What about all the effort that a day takes?
The winding road of my uncertainty
That undying feeling of urgency
Did I do all that I could do to ensure my success?
Did I really give my all
And am I really at my best, today?
We are called to live out each day knowing that all of eternity is wrapped up in it. The kingdom is at hand. Forever in a day.