Getting that email from Rick Warren yesterday wasn’t the first time his name had crossed my mind this week. Neither was writing that Ron Paul article. The night of Christmas Eve, I went with Ashley to the Christmas party thrown by her father’s side of the family. The big Christmas exchange, where they exchange gifts in pre-selected random pairs, since that side of the family is so fucking huge, it’d be too expensive to buy presents for everyone.
We were standing in the kitchen with Ashley’s Grandma Boots, Aunt Glenda, and cousin Allison. Grandma asked if anyone else had seen Joel Osteen on 60 Minutes the other night. Apparently, Joel Osteen was on 60 Minutes the other night. Grandma was interested in whether or not he addressed the question of why he hardly ever mentions Christ in his sermons. Apparently, Joel Osteen hardly ever mentions Christ in his sermons.
This set Allison off. She moved from Osteen over to Rick Warren, claiming that she read The Purpose-Driven Life, only to throw it away upon realizing that Rick Warren was a “false prophet.” Not a false prophet, according to Allison and Grandma Boots: John Hagee.
For starters, I’ve eavesdropped on Joel Osteen’s show now and then. I’m pretty sure that grinning automaton begins every single show by having holding his Bible over his head and having the entire congregation repeat some sort of weirdo inspirational mantra. If you think he’s not Christian enough because every other word out of his mouth isn’t “Jesus,” then I’m not sure what to tell you.
For another thing, can you possibly imagine how surreal it was for me to be standing in that kitchen, listening to people who share a major percentage of my beloved Ashley’s genetic material disparage Osteen and Warren for not being Christian enough, and speak admiringly of that fat little ball of homophobia, John Hagee? Barely a day goes by that I don’t make fun of these people! Sometimes all three in the same day! In a very, very mean-spirited fashion, I might add. Go figure.