>Someone has apparently spit in Ryan Murphy’s milk.
For those who don’t know, Ryan Murphy is the creator of Glee. Last season, Glee was must-see TV for Abby and me, and yet this season there’s been something off about it. I wasn’t sure what it was until tonight’s episode, called “Grilled Cheezus.” It was all about religion and faith and our dependency on the Flying Spaghetti Monster in the sky. The Christians in this show were caricatures and jokes, and you could almost feel the angst seeping through the pages of script written by people who had been wronged by supposed agents of love. Something was definitely wrong.
I hate how Christians are portrayed in the media, but as I continued to watch, I was hit with a more disturbing realization: I hate how we portray ourselves more.
In Acts 11:26, Luke throws in a little side note about the church in Antioch. This was the first place that Christians were called Christians. That word in Greek means, loosely, little Christs. The citizens of Antioch, a pagan place, saw the way the believers were acting and felt compelled to call them little Christs, as if their behavior mimicked that of Jesus. I asked my students today, “If you realized that by calling yourself a Christian you were really calling yourself little Christ, would the name fit?” I know that from my vantage point, the answer is no.
One of the openly gay characters on Glee, Kurt Hummel, said he can’t believe in a God who would “make him gay and then tell His followers to mock and ridicule him.” While the theology of this statement is revolting on many levels, that’s not what this post is about. The sick thing is that we have propagated that belief. The world looks at us, as a body, and says that we hate, discriminate, show prejudice, and punish people who don’t share our beliefs. We show hate, not love, to minorities, women, gays, foreigners, other denominations, other religions…basically everyone who doesn’t fit our cookie-cutter version of ourselves. When the world sees how I treat others, am I trying to make more little Christs or more little Jasons?
I’d like the media, or the world, or anyone really to see Christians for what we should be: people who show love to everyone and make the world a better place. I’m tired of TV shows where Christians are idiots or close-minded or the bad guys or naive. But more than that, I’m tired of the TV shows being right. I want our name back, and it needs to start with me.
“All the nations you have made will come and worship before you, O Lord; they will bring glory to your name.” Psalm 86:9