As a kid, I was quite the Popeye fan, which fit my self-inflicted identity as a card carrying Weird-Oh. As an adult, I became a fan of another hero who identified himself with almost the same words Popeye used, and I became even more of a Weird-Oh. My later-days hero? “I am who I am” is his name.
How does that make me weird?
The short answer is, “It goes with the territory.”
You see, from nearly the beginning of time, those who tried to honor the Creator were thought to be a bit … off. Imagine the reception Noah received when he tried to tell his neighbors a storm was brewing. And that’s fairly typical of the reaction the rest of God’s prophets received when they carried his message to the people.
Unreservedly following God has never been popular; witness the reception Jesus, and later, his followers, received first at the hands of the religious Jews, then the Romans, and later the Muslims, the Romanist Inquisitors, the Nazis, the Communists, and even today’s secularists.
If that were not enough, many who align themselves with modern Christendom compromise Christ’s gospel message in the name of Diversity. According to those folks, Jesus didn’t really mean, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” (John 14:6) Seems God’s eternal truth isn’t inclusive enough for them.
As a certifiable Weird-Oh, my advice for church-goers is to quit playing Religion, and get serious about obeying the Christ we worship on the Lord’s Day. If we truly follow Him, real, Holy Spirit revival will come to God’s church, and we’ll finish turning the world upside down(Acts 17:6), as the first-century believers began doing.
Like Popeye and his spinach, if we don’t have God’s Holy Spirit in us, we’ll never defeat this world’s bully and his minions. But if we obey God … well … who needs spinach?