(Sometimes on the NPR show This American Life, host Ira Glass will inform the audience that the upcoming segment will talk about sex and then warn the listeners that while the description of sex is not going to be detailed, it does acknowledge the existence of sex. It’s basically a warning for parents who are listening to the show with kids around. Here is my disclaimer for this blog post:
Hello, Theologee readers. Today on my blog, pornography and Jesus will cross paths on a sticker. While I am not going to get too graphic about either subject, I just thought you should know in case you want to skip reading this post. Thank you.)
There is a blessing to having family who live in a tremendously fun city where you can drop your kids off with grandma and auntie in order to go out to restaurants that don’t serve crayons with the menu. My husband and I got some such “couple’s time” in the fabulous city of Las Vegas and we took full advantage of it. On Saturday night, Mark and I were enjoying the band at an Irish pub when a bachelor party walked in. How did I know they were a bachelor party? They all wore the same red t-shirts with a picture of the bachelor on the front and a quaint little couplet on the back that read: “The end is near, buy JB a beer.” The group was very jovial and friendly and I couldn’t help but notice that they all had little, round stickers stuck on their shirts. This is what the sticker said:
I read the sticker and said aloud to the wearer, “Yes, I do believe that Jesus loves porn stars!” The gentleman concurred and asked if I wanted the sticker. Because I thought that the sticker would make an interesting blog post, I thanked him and took it.
How do I know Jesus loves porn stars? Because of the transitive property, that’s how. Stay with me on this:
If Jesus loves all people
And porn stars are people
Then Jesus loves porn stars.
This sticker is the antitheses of those protest signs seen all over the news. If anything is to be gleaned from those protest signs it’s that “God hates fags.” Of course, He does not hate gays (or cigarettes if you are British) because I don’t believe that God hates anyone- gay, straight, transgendered, or even the Seahawks who robbed the 49ers of a Superbowl ticket. The beauty is that here was a sticker that says Jesus loves. I truly think that in certain parts of the country, the backlash to religions comes from the various angry and loud, camera-loving factions whose entire relevance is based on their need for calling out whom they think God hates. How can one truly know God if someone is constantly telling them that what they do is wrong- that God hates it if you are this, or do that, or think this, or want that? What about the message that God loves you? That, yes, you are imperfect and yes, you are flawed, but much like your mother, God loves you and just wants you to call once in a while.
If you hadn’t noticed, there is a website URL on the bottom of this sticker. Apparently, the guys from this organization, xxxchurch, have been going to the AVN (Adult Video News) awards for the past 10 years or so, not to scream at the people in the pornography industry but instead to pass out stickers and Bibles that proclaim “Jesus loves porn stars.” They work with people addicted to pornography and those in the sex industry by introducing them to Christ. Talk about going into the lion’s den! Or would the AVN’s be the sex kitten’s den? Either way, they brave the overly short dresses and the creepy gawkers to spread their message.
While I have only done minimal research on the xxxchurch and its founders, I think their hearts are in the right place but their “Love the sinner, hate the sin” mentality might be a little narrow. After sitting on the board of an organization which helps sex trafficking victims, I believe that for those people who have strong sexual addictions and for those who work in the sex industry, merely welcoming Jesus into their lives is not the intense psychological work that needs to be done to conquer any potential trauma. I think that becoming a Christian is not a prerequisite for recovery, nor should it be touted as the ultimate solution to problems. Also, while reading several blog posts on the xxxchurch website, their views seem to hint that homosexuality is a sin and something one needs to ask God forgiveness for. The Kinsey scale showed us that there are ranges in hetero/homo sexuality in humans. Let me put that in the transitive property of equality:
If God made scientists
And Kinsey, a scientist, made the scale of sexuality
Then, God is okay with my girl crush on Padma Lakshmi.
(Okay, I may need to work on this one a little.)
Anyway, while I don’t agree with their complete philosophy, I can agree with xxxchurch’s methods. Let’s talk about the love of God. Let’s talk about His forgiveness of our sins. Let’s talk about spreading the message that you are not perfect and that’s okay. Let’s talk about finding Jesus in a desert and believing he does love the “outcasts” of society.