Hopelessly out of touch

January 6, 2011


Back in the 1960’s there was a western that I liked to watch: The Guns of Will Sonnett. Walter Brennan, the great TV cowboy played Will Sonnett.  It was about a Pa and his boys.  One line in particular I remember was when Pa was warning the weekly (and perhaps weakly) bad guy that trouble would come if they didn’t change their ways (a paraphrase).  Pa would look at the bad guy and say, “No brag, just facts.”    It’s that line I remember most about the show, not counting Walter Brennan’s unique voice.

But I was looking at the “latest news” this morning and I saw that last night The Peoples Choice Awards were on.  So I took a quick glance at the winners.  Guess what, of the twenty people who were pictured as having won a Peoples Choice Award, I recognized eleven.  By direct inference that means that I did not recognize almost half of these famous celebrities –  no brag, just facts.  I’m not friends with any of them.  I don’t know what shows they were in, how old they are, or who their mothers are.  I am hopelessly out of touch with the mainstream media, and I could not care less than I am.  Oh, I know, if I want to minister to the people who this media is trying to reach, I should know something. So from time to time I will adjust my rabbit ears (they no longer look like rabbit ears but you know what I am talking about) and tune in to see what is on.

But the fact is, those wildly “popular forever” people will be completely off the radar screen in a few years, some in just a few months, and some hopefully, in weeks.  Popularity has less to do with talent, it seems, than it does with a willingness to show off ones flaws, or even one’s willingness to publicly sin.  Even the promos for the new crop of “adult comedies” disgust me.   I guess that’s why I don’t know who any of those people are.

Some stars, without question do significant things with their fame and fortunes.  Most buy mirrors so they can contemplate their umbilicus rings without straining their necks.  I admire a good actor for doing a good job on a good role.  There is even some mindless diversion I receive from the digital signals entering my home.  But to pick a favorite?  I’d rather cast my vote for favorite ice cream and make sure I sampled one of each so I could be sure to be fair.

I don’t think God cares if we enjoy mindless entertainment from time-to-time, but I also don’t think he likes us wasting the precious time that he has given us.  He gives us a Sabbath day of rest following six days of work, so I know that rest and recreation are good for us, body, mind and soul.  But we need to be as careful when we chose our recreation as when we choose our vocation.

I also don’t think God minds it if I am hopelessly out of touch with pop culture as long as I am hopefully in touch with the Holy Spirit, and I am an agent of hope to the people he places in out path.

Even if it means inviting them over for ice cream.  Come to think of it, I need to try a couple of those flavors again, so I can make this people’s choice.


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