Would you talk to a tall, balding guy in a sweaty jogging suit if he wandered into your church on a Sunday morning? Most people didn’t when I did that very thing, years ago, at a small church near Dallas. In fact, two women glanced at me like I was the Unibomber and quickly skittered away. I had showed up to perform my skit, “Emmaus Exercise,” a modernized version of the story in Luke 24:13-35.
After the service, as we ate obligatory potluck in fellowship hall, the aforementioned ladies glided up to me with toothy smiles and drawled, “Why didn’t you tell us you were the guest preacher earlier this morning? If we had known who you were, we would have talked to you!”
It must be human nature to avoid people we feel are “different.” Just the other night, before a performance of The Forgotten Carols at the Artisan Center Theaterin Hurst, TX, a castmate told me a similar story. After each show, the actors line up in the lobby to greet theater patrons on their way out. In one of the last scenes of the musical, this woman comes onstage as a biker chick—black bandana, Harley T-shirt, leather leggings, the works. She noted that the patrons happily greeted all the actors except her. Most offered a nervous glance before skipping her to talk to the other performers. Interestingly, this woman is a happily-married Mormon mother of six kids, about the nicest person you would ever want to meet. She doesn’t even own a motorcycle; probably wouldn’t know how to start it if you gave her a key and the owner’s manual.
So it’s not just within the four walls of a church building that you can be ignored or rejected. But out of all the places in the world, why is the church even on that list?
Biker Chick photo courtesy of snnellis via stock.xchng