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:: Friday, March 14, 2003 ::

You know, Mike Bishop made a really good point about "spiritual pimping." I've had some similar reflections.

I think about stuff in terms of campus ministry. We strategize about various ways to contact students all the time. One of these is to go into "secular" space (if "secular" even exists) and we start conversations with people we hope to meet. But this often begins to look like some guy trying to pick up chicks at the bar. We spend a lot of time coming up with our "pick-up lines" (excuse me, "conversation starters"). We try to place ourselves in situations where we can meet new people whom we can form meaningful relationships with. Oftentimes, we do this in ways that send all the wrong signals. Imagine a random person coming up to you in a park or in a bar and trying to talk to you. They're either trying to sell something or they're trying to pick you up. Either way, we send all the wrong signals.

I think it is possible to find ways of reaching new people whom we do not know without being so socially awkward. I just haven't found it yet. Ideas, anyone?

Sometimes churches act like some of those dating services: they help people develop their "profile," and then they hook them up with a group of people that have similar interests. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't. Spiritual pimping's an interesting way to look at it.

It seems that Christians are going to have to play the role of amateur sociologists for awhile until we get the hang of what it means to share the good news of Jesus with people in a way that is recognizable as good news.

Lord have mercy! We want to follow! And I, for one, am at a loss. Open our eyes to what you are doing and how we can be involved!

:: Matt 3/14/2003 12:43:00 AM :: permalink :: ::
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