Yesterday, I wrote a post about Holy Rollers (a documentary about card-counting Christians who took $3.5 million from blackjack tables across the country over six years) and David Drury, one of the subjects of the film, who also recently wrote a short article about his experience for CNN.com.
I also mentioned that the downtown campus of Mars Hill Church was hosting a free screening of Holy Rollers tomorrow at 6:30 pm. For those who aren't familiar with the church, it's a successful evangelical startup where the lead preacher prides himself and his preachers for being—among other things—macho men: He talks a lot about what makes a "real" man, he makes fun of "effeminate" preachers, and has railed against Christians who believe in a "Richard Simmons, hippie, queer Christ... a neutered and limp-wristed popular Sky Fairy." The guy walks and talks like someone desperate to prove something—not about Christ, but about himself and his style. (And make no mistake, it is nothing more significant than style. Every preacher claims to be rooted in Biblical fundamentals, but any old devil can quote scripture for his purpose. The differences between them are simply fads, this season's preening fashion lineup.)
More to the point, he doesn't take well to criticism. After one popular uproar at Mars Hill, he accused the dissenting chunk of his congregation of "sinning through questioning" (a phrase that would have given our Founding Fathers, the ones that evangelicals and Republicans are so fond of invoking, the chills).
Anyway. After yesterday's post, Mars Hill disinvited Drury from the screening—he suspects it's because his wife Stephanie Drury is an outspoken critic of evangelicals in general and Mars Hill in particular: She runs a funny site called Stuff Christian Culture Likes and a Twitter account @fakedriscoll.
I guess what the old folks always said is still true—the young buck who needs to beat his chest the hardest, who needs to prove that he's the toughest bulldog in the junkyard, is usually the most frightened and insecure on the inside.
Maybe being tough enough to welcome criticism and stay graceful under fire aren't qualities of the "real" men at Mars Hill.