The Wacky Emerging Church: Reason #6
March 11, 2008, 9:58 am
Filed under: blogging, culture, emerging church

This is the third entry in a continuing series. You may want to read my list of disclaimers and intro remarks here, if you haven’t done so already.

Reason #6: Did you hear what Bill O’Reilly said about Jerry Springer??? OMG!!!

We’re a big bunch of total suckers for controversy. We take pleasure (whether it’s admitted pleasure or guilty pleasure) when some prominent conservative dude says something sassy about some emerging church dude. We like to jump up and down when an emerging church pastor calls another one a heretic or a sissy or a Republican. Better yet, when a blog gets people riled up, we like to jump on the dogpile and throw down . . . 246 comments later, some new controversial thing gets said, which spins the original thing off into a whole new direction. The emerging church blogosphere sometimes resembles the checkout lane at the grocery store, with all the magazines and their tabloid headlines.

What’s the deal with that anyway? Most of the things that get people all fired up are silly and lack substance. And yet we spend the time to read what so-and-so said about the other guy, and what the other guy said back. Guess what folks? Middle school is OVER, and there’s a word that accurately describes much of this stuff: Gossip.

Geez, I wish I hadn’t said all that. Because I am soooooo guilty. Really. Dangit.

Oh, and one other thing. You know how a lot of us in the emerging church have jumped on the nonviolence bandwagon? Yeah, so, you might want to consider how these controversies that we so eagerly jump on, frequently do violence to our souls and the souls of others. We say mean, hurtful things to one another all the time. And even if we don’t actually speak or write the words ourselves, the fact that we subscribe to the blogs and magazines that are regularly controversial tempts us to meditate on things that make us feel angry or disrespectful. Nonviolence starts at home, in the heart.

One thing I do with regularity, is review the subscriptions in my feedreader and see which ones are likely to stir up a bunch of negativity in myself. Whether it’s a “news” site or some blow-hard’s blog, I’ll delete the feed, at least for a while, until I can put myself in check. It’s a simple step, but one that I’m certain has saved me from stupidity more than once. When I’m asked, “Did you hear what Prime Minister Goofball said about the Dark Lord of the Stupidrome?,” I can just smile and say, “Nope.” Think about it, eh?

Thank you for your attention. That is all. Comment at will.


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