Embracing the Controversy
Yesterday, I stepped into a little offline controversy by asking the question “Did Jesus poop?” Folks online were supportive, but people I know personally were a bit put off. I understand where they’re coming from—Jesus is holy, and as such we should revere Him. I wholeheartedly agree. Jesus, as our savior, should be venerated, sanctified, lifted high. My point yesterday—if I had one—was simply to put forth the notion that we don’t serve a distant Lord. He has been here, was born as a baby, lived, breathed, walked among us—in short, experienced everything it is to be human. And all without compromising His divinity. So I guess I don’t understand how pointing out that He had bodily functions like ours somehow besmirches His reputations, is in anyway irreverent? On the contrary, I think this makes Him all the more accessible to us. In any case, that was yesterday; today, I’m embracing the controversy.
Imagine with me a world (a place and time much like today) where the savior has just made his entrance at a truck stop. Some—his parents, those looking for his arrival—recognize him, most don’t, and others want to make a fast buck. It is with third group that we are here concerned today.
After Mary and Joseph have settled in Podunkville with their new baby, some folks approach them with a generous offer: they will handle all of their baby’s soiled linens for them at no charge. Now, this young couple, having had to change their fair share of diapers already, readily agrees. It’s quite a burden off their shoulders. No muss, no fuss. Unbeknownst to them, these seemingly kind folks—having heard who their son is, but not really believing—begin selling the contents of the diapers as a salve to heal the world’s ills. “Deaf—put this in your ears. You’re guaranteed to hear.” “Blind, rub some in your eyes—you will see.” And so on. It is a wonder cure for whatever ails. It is Holy Sh*t. Problem is, it doesn’t do anything that it purports to do—it just stinks things up.
I wonder how much of what we as Christians, as the church of Jesus Christ, offer has much the same effect on the world today. Is it a sweet-smelling savor, or an unholy stench? Are we offering Jesus, or merely a stinky substitute? Does this make you uncomfortable to read? If so, good—it makes me uncomfortable, too. I want you to know that I write out of my own needs: to be authentic, to be real, to offer the real Jesus, to drop pretense, and live in His purpose. To drive the demons of Fakianity out of my own life. Today, I may have surpassed your comfort level by writing what I did, and I’d like to say I’m sorry, but I just can’t: the stakes are too high. The world needs real Christians, not diaper salesmen. What do you think?