Monday, August 2, 2010

Your ________ Life Now

I think nothing encapsulates what is wrong with Christianity more that the simple, mere title of Joel Osteen's book, "Your Best Life Now." That is what much of what passes for (or is passed off as) Christianity today has been reduced to - how to manipulate God and appease Him to make your life better now.

Is that all we think Christianity it - some type of guided self-help series? Go into the "Christian" book store and you will see this is sadly true. Oh look, it's the biblical guide to balancing my checkbook - well, if it's biblical it must be extra holy, I better buy it.

To often preachers are trying to sell something to people, something to make their life different now. Have your best life now. A few years ago it was have an EXTREME life now. I'm sure there will be some new sort of AWESOME life we are supposed to have, fulfilling, enriching, whatever the hip lingo is. I don't know, I don't care.

You know what Christianity is really about? Your Crappy Life Now. Christianity is about the fact that you are a sinner in a sinful world, surrounded by sinful people - and you know what that means? In your life, there will be lots and lots of junk, and it doesn't matter how much you sweep, how much you clean, there's always going to be junk, and pretend otherwise won't change that. Putting on a happy face doesn't change that.

And the Christian faith, when it isn't merely trying to sell stuff, will tell you way. You're a sinner, and the wages of sin is death, and all those little craptacular moments, all those moments of utter suckitude you face - little bits of death, snipping away at things. And you can't escape, you can't fix it. No matter how good you determine to be, no matter how virtuous you strive to be - sin and death will just snip out one thing after another.

That's the Law.

And over and against this problem, the Church doesn't proclaim programs or plans - it proclaims Christ Jesus, God become Man, God who goes to the Cross to die and win us forgiveness for ours, who takes up our death for us - and then, and this fantastic, rises from the dead, defeating that death that constantly annoys and messes with our life now. And being risen and victorious, our Lord says, "I give you my life - because of me, you don't die. Death can do it's worst, this life now can stink on ice - you will rise to live everlasting. And this is yours now.

In the midst of Your crappy life now , you have Christ's Everlasting Life Now, life that stretches beyond this present morass, life that brings joy even in the midst of all this junk we see -- because we know all this junk, it's temporary, it doesn't win out, we don't have to ignore it and play pretend happy time - we have life in Christ.

And that is a good, good thing. That is good news, that is Gospel. Enjoy Your Everlasting Life Now in Christ.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

"Your Crappy Life Now" true. I can't quite picture those books flying off the shelves at Mardel's, though.