Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Making a difference

“Catch phrase” is one of those hybrid word pairs idiomatic in our increasingly short-hand, cobbled-together lingo.  My mind is prone to being caught; but I have always had another habit in a similar vein, i.e., quoting favorite lines from movies, musicals, sitcoms--any form of entertainment--particularly enjoyable when others laugh, remembering the shared experience.
In the 60s, my generation found a lot of this sort of material on comedy albums. 
Then came “The Firesign Theater.”

For the undergraduates I will explain that Firesign was a group of comics doing ensemble recordings as though they were radio shows, produced to play off the effects of psychedelic substances.  The result was a layered production with so much going on that most folks just couldn’t get it all the first time around.  By the time we had heard everything, and sifted through the layers of meaning, we had learned many of the key lines, and had great fun inserting them into our day’s dialogue.  They must have had a wonderful time writing and producing these complex romps through nonlinear satire.

To this day, breaking out one of those lines is a quick way to find those in a group with a similar background, or, at least, part of the same generational experience.

Nowadays we read Scripture with an advantage the “actors” in the script never had.  We have all 66 books right together where we can find the connections and see how the picture interlocks.  We even have teachers and study guides to help us.

We are the “in” crowd who get all the references and call-backs and images which prove these 44 disparate writers were directed by a single Author. 
(Over time, the Bible proves It is what It says It is.)

But, as it works out, fools don’t read it.  (So, don’t worry about the company in Heaven…No fools there, thank You, Lord!)

Now, the biblically illiterate don’t let their ignorance stop them from having lots to say about this book they have never studied.  They’ve heard and read plenty about the Bible, so they can be experts without  toiling through its unfamiliar organization and difficult language.
In fact, adding their many diatribes—books, articles, PBS specials—to the myriad of legitimate studies and commentaries makes the Bible the most written-about book in the planet’s history.  Sadly, it is the least read, especially in our used-to-claim-to-be-christian country, even among professing believers.

What if we became a trend--a movement of Bible fans who enjoyed quoting it back and forth, laughing with joy when a phrase was the perfect fit for what was happening?

At lease we’d be having more fun than the “out” crowd.

Stop trying to make a difference and just be it.

Here are some new "in" crowd memes for ya from my very favorite entertainer, Tim Hawkins: