It was a terribly sad Sunday.
As I stood before the people, preparing to pray with them, I was met with many saddened faces. And yet a few seemed to have a cheery disposition, as if a great victory had been one. I knew what was going on. Clearly our church was divided by the latest controversy launched on the internet.
They, like me, had read the scathing article on Friday evening exposing Pastor Celebrity. And so, I knew that the smiling faces were those excited that the latest celebrity pastor had been exposed. Likewise, I knew the frowns were indicative of the sorrow one feels when their leader has fallen.
After the service I talked with a few of those frowning faces. “So, I take it that you heard, about Pastor Celebrity?”
His frown now turned to confusion as he responded with an astonished, “Who?”.
Now, I’m the one confused. “How could he not have heard? How is he claiming to not even know this guy—much less the controversy surrounding him over the weekend”?
As he talks a little more—and I start to check out from boredom—he tells me about losing his job on Friday, his fear, worry, and a bunch of other stuff that matters little. Obviously, this dude isn’t in the know, and isn’t saddened by the significant. I move on to the next frowning face.
One by one, these frowning faces tell me that their problem has little to do with Pastor Celebrity—an important guy that they’ve only vaguely heard of. They’ve got sadness coming from other places; things that don’t threaten to unravel the very fabric of Christianity.
As I get in my car I wonder to myself, “How could I have such an ignorant church? These poor people don’t know about all of the significant issues that are happening in the church today. They aren’t even taking sides in these debates—these very significant church-impacting debates. It’s like they don’t even care.”
As I back out of my parking space, I mutter a little prayer that they’d care about the things that really matter.
Most of what we bloggers consider earth-shattering and church-impacting rarely even hits the people in the pews. Most of the people in your congregation haven’t heard the name of your favorite blogger. Ever.
But they have heard of Joel Osteen. And that latest Joyce Meyer book is flowing through the veins of your women’s ministry.
Meanwhile, pastors and bloggers that ought to be shielding sheep from these soul-raping thieves are spending time knocking out the knees of a celebrity blogger/pastor that has little to no impact on their local congregation.
In my opinion, we’ve overestimated the impact of our social media platform. We assume that if our reach is wide that it must also be deep. We give ourselves an unbiblical position within the local church as if Paul included “blogger” in Ephesians 4:11-12. We’ve convinced ourselves that our debates and discussions are more significant than the aroma of Christ that follows Ernie the electrician into every home that he helps.
Don’t misunderstand my point. Bloggers—especially those with larger platforms—excel at impacting those that will impact other local churches. At least we have the potential to do that. Until we get our head in the clouds and lose our focus.