A while back, I remember having a conversation with someone at an event. Our conversation was going quite well and we were discussing many issues of the ministry. Mid sentence, he stopped me from talking and asked me if I could take a picture of him and the speaker for the evening, that had just so happened to be within proximity of where we were. At that moment, our conversation ceased as his conversation with the other person began.
What am I to think? Obviously what I was saying wasn’t nearly as interesting as what he could be talking about with the other person. In retrospect, the look on his face as I was speaking made it look like he had mentally checked out and was just looking for an opportunity to ask me to take this famous photograph.
I can’t fault him for his actions. If you want to talk to somebody, then you want to talk to somebody. I just hope that I’m never the cause of a cancelled conversation.
Coming in a day and age where there is so much exposure, self made, man made with an ease of publicity, anybody at any time can become popular on many levels. Want to show your face? Youtube it is. Got something to say. Podcast. Afraid of exposing your face or voice? Get a blog. Anybody, anywhere can come out of nowhere and rise to prominence and fame. (Daniel’s little horn anyone?)
But just as everybody is going in one direction, hoping for that recognition, I’ve been spending the last few years, trying to stay away from the pull of popularity. (Even at this moment, this blog is read only by my family and a few friends. Though this entry may make me seem hypocritical, I assure you, my intent for this blog is not for popularity. In due time, it will be a vehicle meant for more theological, educational purposes).
As carnal human beings, there are insecurities that lie in wait. When others begin to feed our insecurities, the more we crave it. When others shower us with praise and push us toward celebrity status, it’s hard to remain humble. The enemy takes hold of any opening, and we begin down a slippery slope.
As a Christian, a believer in Jesus Christ, we should all be defined by service. I work, do the things I do, sacrifice, and toil because I want to serve. I want to serve because I was bought at a price. I want to serve because greater love has no man than this, than a man serve (lay down his life for) his friends. I need to serve… because Christ served me by dying for me. This act of service shouldn’t be done with attaining worldy rewards in mind.
Other pastors, preachers, teachers, speakers, evangelists, theologians, and clergy leaders may love the attention, crave it, and possibly handle it better than I could. Kudos to them. However, let’s not be mistaken. I’m not saying that ALL attention is bad. I just don’t want any additional attention that might tempt me to think of myself as anything more than a servant of God.
I’m not walking that path. Give me the path less travelled by. Let me walk the road marred by sacrifice and tears. Let me trod the trail that evidences no sign of celebrity compromise, blinded by the flash of photography.
And let me walk it with Christ leading me.
Picture taken from http://baseballsnatcher.mlblogs.com/paparazzi.jpg