I have access to at least a hundred TV channels, and some nights when I cannot sleep, I flip from channel to channel to find something to watch or to anesthetize me.
Invariably I come across the preachers; they are legions and judging by the crowds they minister to, they seem to be doing very well, thank you.
The preachers, (who, I don’t know why are mainly Southerners) endlessly quote the Bible and rhapsodize about Jesus. It always seems that they all knew him personally and are very familiar with his most inner thoughts.
Personally, I was never close to Jesus, but I understand that he was some kind of a do-gooder.
I have always been suspicious of do-gooders and I am not the only one. George Orwell said it better than I could when he wrote “Saints should always be judged guilty, until they are proved innocent”.
Saints make me uncomfortable. They are too… perfect. When I venture to compare myself to a saint, the gap if so frighteningly wide that I get dizzy just thinking about it.
But preachers feel comfortable with saints and have a very good and close relationship with Jesus. It seems that they were schoolmates or something like that. They know all about his life, where he was born, the kind of parents he had, the kind of pranks he used to play on his teachers, and most of all what he did and what he said.
I couldn’t be a preacher, because I have a bad memory and because I am so damn skeptical. Preachers casually mention that Jesus fed thousands of people with a few loaves of bread. Nobody in the audience blinks an eye. But myself, I feel a little dubious…
Preachers have written proof of what they say and two thousand years of history to fall back on. Me, what do I have? A few copies of National Geographic. What they say and what they show in this magazine is closer to my line of thinking.
I think that it’s great that so many people find salvation listening to preachers, but as I said before, they (being so close to sainthood) make me feel uncomfortable and I quickly switch to “Everybody loves Raymond”, something I can relate to.
PS: I have found that preachers are very good at inducing sleep. So if you occasionally battle insomnia, put away those nasty little pills and tune in instead to those wonderful fellows who are such marvelous hypnotizers and storytellers.