Truth in advertising is rare. For the entirety of my life, I have witnessed various individuals declare airbrushed and photoshopped models giving unrealistic images of the human ideal. The hamburgers I receive at the local drive thru are seldom as attractive as their distant cousin on television. The side salad always lacks the morning dew droplets seen in the print ad. My new athletic shoes encouraged me to "Just do it", but were no help in the pursuit.
I would feel bad if it were not expected. They present a product that is too good to be true, with a warranty too great to believe, so I will give them more money than its worth, so they can afford to present me the new version in six months. This way of altering reality is not restricted to burgers and shoes. Brides and husbands to be work out and diet like Olympic athletes for the sake of wedding photos. And yes sir, everyone knows it is a toupee at the thirty year reunion. You were bald at seventeen.
Fun aside for a moment, I love the church. Whether it be with noisy folding chairs, hard wooded pews, luxurious theatre seating, or cool green grass worshipping by the campfire, I love church. I find myself uncomfortable with doctrinal photoshopping for the sake of staying "relevant." Removing stretch marks from a model's arm or leg has zero eternal impact. Removing the baptism of the Holy Ghost a significant edit.
To make the church more attractive by blurring out her strength, might, power, and voice is foolish. It would seem that the same mindset that allows for advertisers to create a fantasy to sell you food, clothes and perfume is invading Christian evangelism. The Bride of Christ is not in need of retouch work. Only to be washed with God's word instead of human opinion. The Church is beautiful, and I love her.
We've all seen the fuzzy, big-haired, pink Boa-clad portraits that mall photographers are constantly pumping out. They never represent the models personality or values. I am convinced that when we tell the unchurched the power, love, joy, peace, and freedom that Christ has for them through the Church revival will sweep the land. We must never apologize for the gifts or fruit of The Spirit. healing, prosperity, holiness, righteousness, sanctification, prophesy and the other manifestations of God, in and through us, are not moles or wrinkles. We must pursue God's image and purpose for the corpoarate church. The methods of communication may change but His word and promises will not.
Reading God's word reveals what we should be as the church. No additions, edits, or subtractions needed. Christ thought the church was worth dying, resurrecting, and soon returning for. We must not filter her true image and power. Photoshop is not needed.
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