I’m not one for soapboxes. After all, the name is fitting – I picture something tall, slippery and easy to fall from… and I envision landing flat on my face in a spectacular heap.
But sometimes things just get me all riled up.
And I have to write.
I was reading about the Jesus commercials during the Super Bowl and the post with the article had a zillion comments. Lots of the comments were super critical. And came from believers.
–I don’t like the people who paid for it, said one commenter.
Then you probably shouldn’t read the Psalms either, because the guy who wrote most of that was an adulterer. And maybe avoid the gospels, because those men were a piece of work. And stay away from Paul’s letters, he was an uptight religious muckety muck who offed quite a few people just for loving Jesus.
–Not theologically correct, said another.
If you only knew the unique ways God drew this wayward heart. I once read a book called God on a Motorcycle. Looking back, I can find a hundred reasons this book was theologically wonky, but God used it. He used it to soften me to his love and goodness. Oh, and don’t even get me started on Whitney Houston. My brother had once told me that when he heard love songs, he would imagine God singing them. On came “I will always love you…” by Whitney. The verses weren’t applicable, but the chorus wooed me. I will always love you. I’ll always, I’ll always love you. Really, Lord? Really. I felt his whisper – through Whitney herself.
As God draws us, He teaches us. He grows us up. He shows us things that are, and are not, true about his character. He fixes the misinformation we’ve taken in along the way. But by golly, He will use everything at his disposal to show us his love. This has been for all time. There’s a story in Scripture where some guy was making a difference and the disciples were ticked. They knew the guy and knew his heart was way off base. The disciples were ready to shut him up and Jesus says, “Do not stop him, for whoever is not against you is for you” (Luke 9:50).
So maybe we shouldn’t be quite so critical.
–Jesus doesn’t need a PR campaign, said one more.
But T-Mobile does? It seems that knowing Jesus loves me is way more important than saving on my phone bill – although that one commercial with Bradley Cooper and his mom was actually adorable and may make me switch phone plans. Either way, some folks paid a boatload of money to reach an audience who might not typically hear about Jesus. Now it’s up to us to follow up and let them know some more great truth.
Jesus does get us.
Jesus gave it all to connect to us.
Jesus actually gives us true hope in this mess of a world.
He’s the best thing that ever happened to any of us.
So instead of shooting our own and being hypercritical of people trying to share his love, how about we love too… and teach, draw, build into, pour over and encourage hearts that might want to know more.
It just might be the better way.