i will start this post by saying i have never once watched an episode of duck dynasty. i do not know what it even really is, except for seeing the cards and trinkets at the store with their images plastered all over them and i have heard it is very popular. sometimes in these moments of social media craziness i don’t even want to write about contemporary conversations because they can be so silly and such a waste of time.
but after some of the facebook posts i saw the last few days, it reminded me of how i felt a few years ago when people were lined up to buy chick-fil-a sandwiches to support the company’s president’s position on homosexuality. i remember thinking, “goodness gracious, i wish people would care this much about poverty & abuse & slavery & caring for the marginalized and oppressed.” then the kingdom of God would be so much better reflected in this dark crazy world.
but alas, we’d much rather spend time in chick-fil-a lines or organize letter writing campaigns to cable channels.
i completely support free speech. people can say what they want to say and believe what they want. but what makes me the most sad is that these kinds of moments represent christians to the world. the internet is powerful. our circles of influence are affected. the things we say and do reflect what we believe.
and what do we want to be known for? what should we really be outraged about?
should we be most outraged about keeping our guns or a reality TV show or that everyone would actually have health care?
what was Jesus outraged about?
i’m pretty sure it was about religiosity.
in matthew 23, Jesus says a whole bunch of harsh things to the pharisees; it’s quite the diatribe, but this particular line sticks out today:
“what sorrow awaits you teachers of religious law and you pharisees. hypocrites! for you shut the door of the Kingdom of Heaven in people’s faces. you won’t go in yourselves, and you don’t let others enter either” (vs. 13).
i think of this passage often because of its powerful truth and relevance today, when the world is crying out for hope and we are talking about theology and wasting our time on a great distraction. it feels even more disturbing that we’re in the midst of the advent season and the time that we celebrate the arrival of Jesus and the ways he turns the world upside down.
i could be totally wrong, but i am pretty sure if Jesus had a facebook, he might be saying to us,
children are starving, people are living in poverty and shame, men & women & children are being sold into slavery, people are killing themselves because they are bullied & rejected, women are being oppressed & abused, people are being forced into refugee camps, mental illness is robbing people’s dignity right and left, loneliness and despair is swirling in the air this time of year–and you care more about a character on a reality TV show than all of this!
don’t “like” this page; come and follow me!
i long for the day when we are better represented.
i know so many amazing people who call themselves followers of Jesus or don’t-because-of-the-baggage-that-has-become-attached-to-his-name living out their faith in such beautiful, humble, and brave ways. they are opening the doors to the kingdom of heaven for people instead of wasting time defending positions and picking apart scripture verses. they are outraged about poverty & oppression & abuse & dignity-stripping & equality and are willing to do something about it.
they reflect the incarnation of Christ.
and that’s what we’re supposed to be celebrating this season.
that’s what we’re supposed to be turning the world upside down with.
that’s what our lives are supposed to be centered on.
we are flawed human beings, i know that. none of us can be Jesus,really. but we sure can be a better example of his name, his mission, his hope for people.
please, may we become outraged about more important things.