Back during the Christmas season, I wrote a post about the apparent silliness of LifeWay's "pray while you shop" campaign. Leave it up to LifeWay to outdo themselves, and outdo themselves they have. For all you over-enamored, starry-eyed, twitterpated lovebirds, you can go to LifeWay and learn to love like Jesus! The link takes you to LifeWay Store's main page with a second link that will take you to peruse the online catalog of their new "Love Like Jesus" line of novelty gifts (just in time for Valentine's Day). You can get the Love Like Jesus embroidered pillow. Or the Love Like Jesus divided heart tray (no irony here). Or the Love Like Jesus tote bag. Maybe your darling heart would like the Love Like Jesus plush bear with a photo holder.
LifeWay is promoting the new line of gifts with Jesus' words from John 13:34, "Love one another;" of course, that is LifeWay-ese for "come go shopping." To take one of the most profound, life-altering statements Christ ever made and turn it into a selling point is deplorable. I shudder to think that this is what Jesus really meant when he said those words, especially the context in which He said them.
After He had just denigrated Himself to that of a foot-washer, acknowledged who His betrayer was and loved Him anyway, and knowing that He was only a few heartbeats from the ignominy of the cross, He gave each one of His disciples a little memento of His coming: a heart-shaped coffee-mug with a matching coaster. Jesus' timeless message to His disciples, us included: Go shopping.
Oh, and sorry to let the cat out of the bag, but I thought I would give you the dirt on LifeWay's upcoming selections. For the doctor in your family, there will be the Heal Like Jesus set of medical equipment, replete with a Heal Like Jesus examining kit. For the teacher, the Teach Like Jesus chalk and board set. For a modest price, you can get a Sermon on the Mount or Sea of Galilee backdrop. For the prayer warrior in your family, you will certainly want the Pray Like Jesus prayer shawl, mat, and knee-pads. And for the lawyer, the Litigate Like Jesus matching coat, tie, vest, slacks, and cummerbund.
I think I need a good dose of Pepto-Bismol for the soul.