Thank a Preacher

I watched another TV drama last night about a preacher who was a real idiot. It seems to me that the preponderance of movie and TV Christians are horrible people. They are either really icky-sweet or effeminate, or they are some kind of monster. We have certainly had plenty of characters to provide models for the caricatures. My first coherent memories of church were awful. They asked me not to sing in the children’s choir because my voice was no good. Then the pastor ran away with a woman and took church funds with him. Bad start. I lived through the sixties in a segregated church where there was bitter debate over whether “coloreds” could be members. Christ-like? Then, after my conversion and entrance into ministry, along came the televangelist scandals of the 1980’s. We had lust, avarice, and power on display every night on TV news – and the characters were preachers!. Finally, the Catholics chipped in with a little pedophilia, just to garnish the hypocrisy pie.

Fortunately, for the last 30 plus years I have had the privilege of knowing lots of real preachers who have never made the news. They are the vast majority. I would love to see a TV show or a movie about some regular guy who has chosen ministry over a lucrative profession. Maybe he could do without health coverage because the church can’t afford it, or cut his salary so another staff member can be blessed or a program continued. It would be a nice touch if he worked a second job so he could help folks in his “spare time.” They could show him putting the kids to bed then sitting up to pray and study so the flock gets fresh food on Sunday. How about a scene where he shows up at the bedside of a dying congregant and prays a family through as their loved one enters the doors of Heaven? There are a lot more of those guys and gals in ministry than the crooks and creeps and charlatans. I think these real-life stalwarts might even make a better movie if anyone took the trouble to investigate reality.

Scripture Reading: Remember your leaders who taught you the word of God. Think of all the good that has come from their lives, and follow the example of their faith. Hebrews 13:7 NLT

Somebody Said: We ourselves feel that what we are doing is just a drop in the ocean. But the ocean would be less because of that missing drop. Mother Teresa

They tell me this has been Pastor Appreciation Month. Well, to all you preachers who have not quit, who have fallen and gotten back up, who have not stolen the money or chased the secretary, who have devoted your lives to the calling of God to the best of your ability to do so, THANK YOU!!!! Maybe someday they will make your movie.


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