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Click Bait Christ

June 29, 2022

Every week, I get automated, unrequested, imposed reports on my “screen time”. If I wanted to, I could know how many minutes I spent on the internet today. I really do not want to know.

The internet has become as essential, and unnoticed, as the air we breath. I edited over 100 “pages” of material this weekend that exists in electrons, set in servers, somewhere. I receive over 200 emails a day, and send over 100 – every day. The impossibility of a Sabbath in the 21st century is now taken for granted.

It is beyond cliche to say that we are living our lives on screens. But how is screen time funded? Sure, we all pay for internet service, but how are the unlimited number of websites we seek, bump into, are shoved onto those screens funded? Like everything else, there is money paid to advertisers based on screen time.

This morning, first thing, Jesus joined me. He was Jeff Chandler Caucasian, with the swarthy tan and carefully random hair that just screams 2,000 years agp. Or the beach

He, personally, asked me to join him.

Well, what the ad could not know is that Jesus is with me, now, as I type this. The guy in the ad, a painting really, is just the image of Handsome Grace that gives the internet what it wants: Screen Time.

Jesus Click Bait is everywhere, right beside the hope that we will adopt a rescue dog, or buy a shirt. Or the light fixture I searched for yesterday.

But Jesus, looking soulful (literally!) was looking into my eyes and daring me to take a Bible quiz. “97% Of Christians Can’t Pass This Basic Bible Quiz”. Well, dammit, I went to Sunday School, wait, at the lower left, something called “BleacherBreaker” is the site where Jesus lives.

I still wanted to get be part of the 3%. But no, my click of Jesus’ face simply puts a tiny amount of money in someone’s account, somewhere. No connection, no revelation, let alone salvation- just click bait.

We live For salvation but often live By click bait. We answer tests, judge ourselves by our grades, often failing, but always seeking validation, when really, we are loved without any grade. Or click bait.

Untold millions, billions of moments every moment, humanity is now connecting to click bait when it could simply be willing to be loved by the reality that made them, and everything else. But we prefer to take tests. That we made on the internet, that we made.

Because we can study, prepare, succeed. Until we do not. That motive is not Jesus’ – in the ad, or in each of us. The ad just wants you to click on it, whether it’s a puppy, a baby, the alluring smile of a single from Uzbekistan, or an outraged Citizen. Just click.

The test is meaningless, as is the cause of the test. It is the click that matters. Because the click gets money for the creator of the test, just like every other test we take – whether our report card, our resume, the school our kid gets into. The fact is that the internet has to mud wrestle with our desire to be known as righteous to post a profit.

There is no profit in Jesus. There is the life we find so hard to accept that 97% of us fail the test.

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