Sunday, December 9, 2012
Most nights, I have trouble sleeping, and when I'm awake but too tired to write or read, I watch Christian television. On the whole, it's good, solid stuff, albeit with a slight anti-Catholic bias.
But some of these guys...they can't get through a sentence without bursting into tears.
I understand that the message they are delivering is loaded with emotion, and that some of them feel that their surrender to Christ has saved them from a long spell of hot weather. Really, I get it.
But these guys are professionals. Their job is execute the Great Commission, and to provide support for the existing Christian community. It's not to wallow in the emotion of their own experiences (or to wallow in the experiences of others).
At its heart the Christian experience is nothing if not emotional, but in the part of their job that covers the Great Commission, that sort of display is simply not appropriate.
To be harsh, it makes Christianity look weak. One might say that these guys (most of the emoters are male) are showing that a real man can wear his heart, or more properly the Heart of Christ, on his sleeve, and that it's therefore a display of strength.
I think not, because the people we hope to reach are typically not involved in Christ to anywhere near that degree. They're looking for some form of proof, for a reason to believe.
A weepy pastor just looks like a crybaby. I'm sorry, but that's how I see it. I mean, would you want to join an organization that promises to lower your self-control to the point where you'll break down in public?
To be fair, there are those who find these open displays of feeling attractive, who find that they touch a wellspring of emotion, unreleased within their own breast.
But I think there are far more, especially among Americans, who find it silly and distasteful. I know, for I was one.
The whole point of Christianity is the Good News. It's the hope that we have been redeemed to eternal life. That's the hook, to get them in the church doors.
And when the hook is set, and they know that the price for Heaven is to face the Hell within you...why then, it's time to weep.
But not for long. Because how can you be weeping while you dance for joy?