Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Why is Virtue Considered Boring?

John McGee once preached and taught Bible at the Los Angeles Church of the Open Door. He planned a lecture series on the virtues of Jesus. He was told by an older man that if he lectured on the devil, he could fill the church.

One of the animators for Disney's "Snow White" confessed that he enjoyed portraying the Wicked Witch, but found the rescuing Prince as tedious and boring. There is something in our culture--in ourselves--that finds virtue boring. We make bird feeders of Saint Francis, or temporarily boost Mother Teresa, but the real "press grabbers" will be crooked politicians and mass murderers.

An exception is Princess Diana or "Lady Di". She visited a woman with a baby in a hospital and talked to her. Before she left she asked if the lady had any laundry she could do for her in the hospital laundry! I imagine a worker being asked by Lady Di if the dryer was free to dry some "nappies". This exception tells us a lot.

Don't portray our good people like Kipling's "Plaster saints". David murdered. Paul condoned the murder of a saint. Yet their virtues far outweigh their evil deeds.

Those of virtue are remembered for their touching and beautiful deeds of kindness. But why are they often pictured in such a boring way? Perhaps because these good people are pictured as martyred losers. And who wants to be a loser?

The devil does run the world. Maybe that is a clue to his popularity. Our Bible reveals the real winners though. They go to heaven. The losers have a "hot date" with the Lake of Fire.

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