The Great Debate (Before It Happened)

What happened on Monday evening has been all over the news for the past week – well before it happened. That’s how we do things in America – whether it’s a football game, a holiday, or politics. The hype begins weeks and months in advance. The Super Bowl; Christmas; a presidential debate – it’s all the same insofar as what really seems to matter to us is what happens before it happens.

Jesus’ disciples had a similar tendency. Let me be the one to sit at your right / left when you come into your kingdom! Jesus had to bring the guys back down to earth, reminding them that how they served today was far more important than where they sat tomorrow. Why is anticipatory hype so much more exciting to us than the current circumstance? In fact, it seems as if the “pre-game excitement” has only served to set us up for a monumental let-down.

The Monday evening debate was billed almost like a wrestling match. It’s not an accident that the acronym for the World Wrestling Federation is “WWE” (“World Wrestling Entertainment”). More and more of life’s events are rigged – whether by algorithms that determine what we see on Social Media or “planners” who choreograph life’s most treasured moments.

Who won? When the most exciting thing about the game is the commercials; when all the pre-holiday hype crashes down the day after as you stand at the Customer Service Desk making returns; when the analysts sit around after the fact telling us who came out on top and pushing the dates of the next debate – all of these should be signs to us that the hyped life is NOT the abundant life it promises to be. Today. Right now! This very instant is the one that has the most promise, the most potential and is most worthy of your full attention.

So … Wherever it is you have to go next and whatever it is that is pulling you toward itself with all sorts of manufactured allure, just stop for a moment and look around. Are you fully embracing the mystery and miracle of this moment? If you aren’t enthralled, invested, excited, mystified by right now, what makes you think later is going to be any better?

A blessed Tuesday.

Mark Demers

Want to talk about sex, politics, spirituality? So do I. I grew up in a religious home in the 1950’s and 1960’s. Our country was reeling from assassinations and the devastation of the Viet Nam War. Looking for something beautiful, I got a degree in music, married the love of my life and had children. Looking for God, I then went to seminary. Looking for something that might transform the world, I became a local church pastor. Now, I’m always looking for people who want to talk about important things. I cherish conversations with emerging leaders, people who are antsy to try an idea they believe would change the world for the better. I’d would love to hear from you.