The other day, I read an article in my hometown newspaper giving a glimpse of what happened at a Christian youth gathering over the weekend. The headline associated with the article has to do with the popularity of a particular t-shirt at the event.
That article inspired the following tweet: “they will know we are Christians by our t-shirts, bumper-stickers, picket signs…and if that doesn’t work, maybe we could love one another?”
Seriously? 7,000 students gather to worship, learn, grow, etc…and this is what the reporter takes away from the event?
Sure, the article did elaborate on more than the t-shirts. But, the attention grabber…the headline was about…t-shirts!
Christian t-shirts are great. But, for some, that’s as far as they get in sharing their faith. For some, this is what it means to “let your light shine before people, so they can see the good things you do and praise your Father who is in heaven” (Matthew 5:16, CEB).
Okay, so on second thought, maybe Christian t-shirts are not great. Let’s call a spade a spade. Most Christian t-shirts are cheesy. They play off of something in popular culture and “Christianize” it…trying to redeem it…trying to say, “look, we’re hip, we’re cool, we’re relevant”. And, generally, it’s lame.
Maybe Christian t-shirts are just another example of an “adventure in missing the point”?
To me, it makes more sense to take the money one would spend on a Christian t-shirt and use it to help feed the hungry, clothe the naked, provide shelter for those without, care for orphans and widows, to provide for the needs of those in our communities. But, hey, maybe that’s just me.
I believe in a thing called love. And, when I think of love, I think of the actions that are a result of that love. So, if a Christian t-shirt remind the person wearing it to love God and others, maybe they aren’t so bad. But, if that is the extent of their “loving God and others”, then we might have a problem.
“I give you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, so you also must love each other. This is how everyone will know that you are my disciples, when you love each other.” (John 13:34-35, CEB)
Examples of lame Christian t-shirts: