Friday, October 28
They'll know we are Christians by our fish?

That was the title of the featured article by Russ Breimeier, Christianity Today, I received via email this week. I tried to link it here...but can't figure out how to do that with an email (as opposed to something I see on a website). I'm learning. Be patient.

He expressed well the reason I won't put a "Jesus fish" on my car.

Probably woulda been something I blogged about, he saved me the trouble. Since I can't link it (grrrrrrrr >:( ), I've copied the gist of it. The point that mattered to me was the last sentence...if you wanna skip everything else, jump down to there.

I was driving in downtown Chicago last week, where traffic seems to be our No. 1 pastime—even ahead of baseball (go Sox!). In my mind-numbed auto stupor, I noticed that the car ahead of me had that little fish on the back (you know, the ichthus?) Really, I couldn't help but notice, not because I'm automatically drawn to Christian symbolism, but because the driver rudely cut me off in traffic without using a turn signal.

Don't get me wrong. I'm sure my driving habits have offended others at some point too. None of us are perfect. But the car fish is one of those everyday cultural items that stir mixed feelings in me. At time I'm filled with good cheer when I see it—"Ah, there goes a brother or sister in Christ. God bless!" And admit it: When a driver with a fish on his car is courteous in traffic, you conclude that they were nice because they were a Christian, as "proven" by the fish, right?

If that's true, then we need to accept the downside of the fish. It brands us as a Christian, and that means when we pull a fast one in traffic, another driver may think, There goes another rude and arrogant Christian. There's great responsibility in wearing the fish, and from my driving experiences, not enough Christians take it seriously.

Should that be any different from wearing the name "Christian" in our everyday living? This directly relates to the whole secular vs. sacred debate. I think some Christian artists are reluctant to be called "Christian artists" because they're afraid that in the spotlight, they will occasionally slip up and misrepresent Christ. It's easy to think, Yes, but we're all family in Christian music—we show grace to each other when we make mistakes—whether in traffic or in the mainstream. Right? Tell that to artists like Amy Grant, P.O.D., Sixpence None the Richer, and Switchfoot.

It's something to consider, the responsibility of being labeled for Christ. As it pertains to music, I can see it either way. Whether or not artists are publicly identified as "Christian artists," I can't stress enough that the emphasis be on their conduct, and not on their label. Personally, I'm not the type who calls much attention to myself with symbols and such. I'd rather be labeled a Christian by my words and actions—that people know me as a Christian by my love, not my shortcomings or my advertising.

  Into the pensieve on Friday, October 28, 2005
  Your thoughts, please (3)

At October 09, 2006, Blogger Malissa said...

So true. I think calling ourselves "Little Christ" Christian is a big responsibility. I fall short too often:(

At October 10, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Makes me glad the clergy stick isn't on the new car :}

Seriously though, it's very convicting to be reminded that the whole world is watching.
I was outside a few weeks ago with the kids & I threw something up to one of the boys up on 2nd floor balcony. The next day, one of my co-workers said, "I didn't know you had such a good pitching arm." I never even thought about the neighbors seeing right up my driveway! I'd better watch those actions, next time, it might not be just playing with the kids, it might be an unkind word, or words of frustration.
I'd like to read the whole article.

At October 13, 2006, Blogger Pamela said...

by your fruit....

(man I'm dried dates right now... been reading so much of your blogs)


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Married to my college sweet-heart :)...three GREAT kids I'm not selling to the circus today...I LOVE to laugh (& smile often) to read & cook, hate to shop (unless the store is very small and doesn't leave me dazed and confused). I'm scared of flying so although I'd like to travel more, I don't.

I've been pleasantly surprised to find life in my 40s to be an amazing time of transformation & discovery--of self, others, creation and the Creator.

Here's a partial explanation for my Blog title. I think it'd be cool if they really existed.

A Pensieve is a stone basin.... [One] can extract his or her own memories and place them in the Pensieve, especially to relieve the mind when it becomes too flooded with information. Anyone can examine the memories in the Pensieve, which also allows viewers to fully immerse themselves in the memories stored within...

A Pensieve first appears in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire...

For the complete explanation, see
my 2/17/06 post.

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