If you haven’t read the website Stuff Christians Like, you should. It’s a blog that parodies Christian culture exactly the way Stuff White People Like parodies yuppy culture. Only Jon Acuff, author of the rip off, posts more often. (What is Christian Lander doing these days anyway?) And while Lander, of SWPL, scientifically analyzes White People in order to give minorities hilarious advice, Acuff’s satire is targeted more towards those it pokes at, with fun lists to check whether or not the topics apply to you, and more purposeful – as the author puts it, he tries to “clear away the clutter of Christianity, so people can see Christ.”
The blog is now a book, with the most popular posts, such as the “Side Hug” and some original essays, making it all the website is and more. The first essay, written for the book, is entitled, “Ranking Honeymoon Sex Slightly Higher than the Second Coming of Christ.” I let my father-in-law, a preacher, borrow this book and he opened it immediately. Suddenly, he was laughing so hard he could hardly breathe (which is kind of scary, since he’s had heart problems in the past); all of us present at the time of me handing him the book switched to alert mode, ready to dial 911. When he finally composed himself, he said, “The…first…chapter!” My husband and I smiled wryly and my mother-in-law looked puzzled, as if to say, “What on earth can be that funny?” When my father-in-law finally blurted out the title, he followed it up with, “You don’t know how many times I’ve heard ‘I just want to have sex first and then Christ can return!’”
As I said before, these essays are targeted towards those on the inside to help them see how ridiculous they can be. It’s almost like looking at oneself from the outside and I don’t doubt that many non-evangelical Christians or non-Christians will find the book just as entertaining I and my Christian friends did. If you’re reading this and you don’t get the above paragraph because you can’t relate and don’t have a Christian friend or co-worker, well, this book explains a lot of those weird bumper stickers. Although you may still need a guide at times. And you must be brave, my friend, very brave.
If you are reading this and you can relate to the “Side Hug” or “Ranking Honeymoon Sex Slightly Higher than the Second Coming of Christ,” well, this book is definitely for you. You will laugh but you will also grit your teeth. You will feel conviction and you will feel righteous indignation. But most of all, you will see the Church as Christ sees her, I think, because Acuff doesn’t get nasty and I think God also has a sense of humor. It can’t be easy, stripping people naked and then making them laugh yet properly ashamed of how they look rather than feeling humiliated and/or angry. But this is what Acuff does and continues to do on his blog every day.