In 1995, Alanis Morissette released her song “Ironic“, and it was a huge hit in the United States! The song was nominated for two Grammys, and its video was nominated for six MTV video music awards. Ironically, the song grabbed the attention of many English majors, because the song was more about unfortunate circumstances than irony.
Irony is when a particular result is the exact opposite of what would be naturally expected, so it causes bewilderment to the onlookers. For example: a fire station catching on fire or a person getting on Facebook to rant about how much Facebook is a waste of time.
Of course, the church is not immune to its own ironies—things which should appear one way but simply are not. And, when talking about the church, I’m referring to a people—not a building or institution—the Bride of Christ. Jesus takes this seriously just like any husband would when someone is talking about his own bride.
The church is beat up enough by constant attacks that come from outsiders and insiders alike. Therefore, I desire to approach these ironies with care and caution, seeking reflection, repentance and change. After all, our great Lord, King and Groom deserves our best because He gave us, and continues to give us, His best.
Without further ado, here is a list of some of some heartbreaking ironies of the church and church culture:
Again, the point of this is not to throw stones at our Christian sub-culture, because we all live in glass houses as far as that’s concerned. The point of this is simply to provoke some consideration and perhaps a different way of thinking about these issues. For example, what if “In God We Trust” being printed on our money no longer simply represented us clinging to a past version of our history as a country but represented an unwavering trust in God with everything we have, including our money? What a difference that would make in our daily lives!
But ultimately, our hope should be that as we address the “planks in our own eye” that we would then be able to change the culture around us, not simply by our voices or our protests but because our lives line up with what we preach and proclaim.
“In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.”
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