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"Jesus Camp" revisited

Wow! Finally getting some wonderful feedback and comments from an article. I appreciate anyone who takes the time to comment and give me their opinion and feedback :)

Denis wrote:

I can’t understand why you “hate this kind of press for evangelicals” since it obviously was very effective. Just one article–you didn’t say you actually saw the movie–was enough to convince you that the Christian camp was “creepy.” Why? The tongues? The praying against abortion? The weeping? If the popularity of Christian music is up 300%, why isn’t there room for some Christians who don’t mind showing some emotion? You say you “wanted to get worked up,” but I guess you can’t–you’re an evangelical!

Thanks for your comment, but I believe parts are not understood.  First off, I hate this kind of press for all Christians; I should have been clearer on that and not been so specific with evangelicals.  I can’t see how this does any good for the Christian faith, to have kids worshipping pictures of George Bush, etc. at a camp is not a ministry but a brainwashing (and that’s if the article is fair and the documentary…I was not personally at the camp so I can not speak to that level of involvement). I believe that kind of message or example is exactly the kind of thing that keeps honest nonbelievers from wanting to be a part of faith in Christ.

The reason I get hacked off is because those kinds of camps (a camp that promotes worshipping pictures of George Bush) are the minority (in fact, this is the first time I’ve heard of such a thing occurring at a youth camp) and not the majority.  I could recommend hundreds of other youth camps where kids could attend and grow spiritually and have a terrific time without going through the agenda of a camp like “Jesus Camp”.

I don’t have any problems with a youth camp (or any Christian) speaking in tongues, raising their hands, dancing, or serious prayer.  I’ve had the privilege to speak at many churches and many styles of churches over the past decade (Lutheran, Presbyterian, Methodist, Pentecostal, Assemblies of God, Baptist, Southern Baptist, Bible, Nondenominational, and many more).  One of my first professional speaking jobs, where I actually got paid (I believe it was $75) was at an all black full Pentecostal church in downtown Chicago where 90% of the members were from Ghana, Africa.

I loved it.  Not my personal every week style, but I can see how God ministers to all sorts of people and personalities through all the different denominations.  It’s actually quite moving to have had this experience because I can understand how BIG God is :)

There is always room for all types of Christian, as long as they keep some key things in mind:

  1. Honor God – pursue an authentic relationship with God and honor God’s guidelines
  2. Honor Others – always place high value on people, not matter where they are in life
  3. Honor Yourself – we are created in God’s image which gives us an innate value and this means we have to value ourselves so we can value others (Matthew 22:34-40; pay close attention to verse 39)