Friday, May 30, 2008

Anemic Christian Heroes

I came across the following thought-provoking post today on the OneNewsNow website…

Anemic Christian heroes

Contemporary evangelical America has her heroes. And you can tell a lot about a people by who they look up to. Do they, for instance, look up to talkers, or doers?

Evangelicals today admire writers, speakers and singers. That is a generalization, and probably not entirely fair, but accurate on the whole. Unfortunately, those preoccupations are not the stuff of full-orbed heroism. Still, it is who we tend to admire. Christian bookstores are the places where we purchase the produce of such heroism and assume, eventually, that our own robust faith is one that reads the best authors, listens to the best speakers and taps toes to the best-selling musicians.

Not that any of that is bad, of course. But it is not Christianity.

We have been saved by grace through faith in Christ Jesus. But we are also His workmanship, created in Him to do good works. Indeed, Jesus said, let your life so shine before men that they might see those good works and glorify God. And those words on the page, the preachers from the pulpit and the guitars getting strummed are virtually worthless if those doing the articulating aren't exercising their faith amongst the hungry, the thirsty, the strangers, the naked, the sick and the imprisoned (Matt. 25:31-46) and inspiring others to do the same.

Too much of what is happening is that the writers create an appetite for more of their writing, not application. The preachers stir something in us to want more preaching. And the singers - ah, they are all about the CD's and concert sell-outs at fifty bucks a pop.

But is that heroism? Muscular Christianity? Real faith?

Would that we would salute the AIDS hospice workers, the prison ministers, the pro-life activists, the Jesus-obedient inner-city community developers, the families who foster parent and adopt...

But we don't. Too many of us are too busy buying the newest volume, purchasing concert tickets and getting ahead financially to safely ensconce ourselves away from human need.

Here's to the heroes. The real ones. You know who you are. And, glory to God, you may not.

And to the rest of us. Let us choose our exemplars well. We tend to become that which we look up to. (OneNewsNow - Anemic Christian Heroes)

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