I sat down to right an article for this week on the dangers of living in the “Christian bubble,” this little subculture we American Christians have developed. We have our own books, movies, music, apparel, TV networks, fad diets…even our own wrestling federation! Certainly, not all of it is bad (we obviously need worship music and news from a godly perspective), but we’ve created our own parallel universe that we can comfortably live in our entire lives. After years in the bubble, we relate less and less to our unsaved friends and neighbors. We have our own lingo (I’m probably using it now). We keep to ourselves, huddled in tight so that nothing can get in…including people.
As I was researching this topic, I came across an article on the Christian bubble from an unlikely source…GQ Magazine. Now, I could go on and on, telling you why we’ve got to stop living in our little bubble, but I think it would be more beneficial to hear it from the perspective of a non-Christian. “What Would Jesus Do?” was published in GQ Magazine in September 2002. In it, author Walter Kirn details his seven-day immersion in Christian subculture (what he terms the “Ark”), and he has some fascinating insights:
“If a person is going to waste his life cranking the stereo, clicking the remote, reading paperback pulp and chasing diet fads, he may as well save his soul while he’s at it. Holy living no longer requires self-denial. On the Ark, every mass diversion has been cloned, from Internet news sites to MTV to action movies, and it’s possible to live inside the spirit, without unplugging oneself from modern life, twenty-four hours a day.”
“Ark culture is a bad Xerox of the mainstream, not a truly distinctive or separate achievement. Without the courage to lead, it numbly follows, picking up the major media’s scraps and gluing them back together with a cross on top.”
Granted, not everything he says is dead-on, but as my grandfather used to say, “eat the meat and spit out the bones.” If you do, you may find some convicting truths about our bubble. I know I did.