I recently came across a website for a ministry that my gut reaction to was, “Really?!”
It had something to do with men beating each other up in tight shorts and Ed Hardee style clothes. I’ll be the first to admit, I really don’t get the appeal of UFC or MMA or any of those things. I never enjoyed seeing people in real life get punched in the face.
So when I saw this ministry I scoffed. My attitude was simply, “Is this what Jesus really wants his church to be doing?”
But then I remembered that the people who love MMA and UFC and all that are also loved by Jesus. And while I will probably never watch a fight or go to anything like that, that doesn’t mean that Jesus would stay away too. The Gospel of Jesus needs to be worked into all areas of life.
My opinions about cultural trends are not the same as Jesus’ opinions. I need to get over myself and let Jesus do his work through those guys, and pray that Jesus also continues to do his work through me.
I realized that my attitude at seeing this UFC outreach was very pharisaical. Jesus did ministry differently than the religious establishment of his day. I need to get out of his way and let him continue to do his work.
Here are some things that I think are untapped areas of outreach
Comedy – Not christian comedy clubs but christians going to comedy clubs and being friends with comedians. Even the post op transgendered individual. Comedy = tragedy + time. How can we love people who get on stage and talk about their pain every night? How can christians do Comedy where they talk openly about pain and the foibles of humanity?
Comic Books – Not christians making comic books about the end times, angels, or whatever. What if Christians actually had conversations about Batman, X-men, Superman, etc. What if Christians got really good at drawing and writing for these stories instead of trying to do something “christian”.
Literature – I’d love to write a book to a mainstream audience that tells a redemptive story, without being pigeonholed into the Christian Section of the Christian Bookstore. Tolkien and Lewis were able to do it. Can Christians do that today? Can we write fantasy stories, or even a murder mystery that’s redemptive?
What are the things that you think are great opportunites to reveal redemption to the world?
The other question is will our churches let Christians do these things? Will we get out of Jesus’ way?