Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Disappointed? Jesus won't let you down!

Fellow Christians: SERIOUSLY?!

I'm a Christian; a follower of the risen Saviour. I understand the great commission. I'm also a server. A waiter of tables... a bringer of biscuits. Having worked in three restaurants, I have seen this scenario play out more times than I can count. Christians come into a restaurant and upon leaving, they leave tracts at their table to spread the gospel of Jesus. That's fine, I get it. That said... STOP IT!! At least those who leave this particular tract...

If you've never worked in this field, imagine for a moment being a waiter/waitress. Maybe it was a slow night, maybe it was extremely busy. Who knows? One thing's for sure; if it's Sunday, you've more than likely had pissed off customers (who probably just came from church, but that's another conversation). You just finished working your last table of the night. Your guests have departed, and you make your way to the table where they were sitting. You arrive to see a folded 5-spot laying amongst the empty drink glasses and used silverware. You pick up your tip and unfold it to add it to the rest of your cash. It's at this point that you realize: they got you again! It isn't a $5 (or a $10, $20, or $50 depending on the variation they decided to leave). In fact, there's no money on the table at all. Instead, you have a piece of paper that looks like US legal tender, but reads: "Disappointed? Jesus won't let you down." and begins to explain to you the love of Jesus Christ.

Time for my disclaimer: For the record, I believe everything that this tract says. I believe that Jesus won't let me down. I believe that God loved me, and sent his son to die for my sins. I believe that God provides things that money can't buy. My problem with this particular pamphlet, is that it relies on deception and trickery; traits that MY God does not exhibit. MY Jesus actually says: "...the laborer is worthy of his wages..." (Luke 10:7) He does NOT say: "thou shalt take this cleverly disguised piece of paper, and play humorous tricks on as many people as possible".

I'm a firm believer that the pure love of Christ can be more effective than a tract, a lesson, or a sermon, and certainly more than any guilt trip. I believe that if you show people Jesus before you preach Jesus, your lesson will be infinitely more effective. This right here? This doesn't show Jesus in any kind of positive light.

This propaganda does more harm to the Kingdom than it does good. It has 100% the opposite effect of what the person leaving it intends. I believe that the people who leave these, do so with a pure heart. They want to spread the Gospel and get the word about Jesus, but in actuality, this pushes more people away than it draws in. Unsaved people receive these papers and say, "Why would I want to be associated with a God like that?" Honestly, it's a good question. I wouldn't want to spend time on Earth with people who treated me that way, why should they want to spend eternity with a God who does?

If you're called a Christian, it's because you're SUPPOSED to be an example of Christ and His love. People are supposed to look at you (me... us...) and see Him. Do you want to show a Jesus that's a liar? A Jesus that deceives us and plays tricks on those who don't follow Him? A Jesus that gets your hopes up, then fails to deliver? That sounds like someone else I've heard of, but not my Jesus...

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