Monday, January 18, 2010


Do You Deserve "Promotion"?

Glenn Lucke at CGO asks "What price humility?" He starts by extensively quoting David Brooks on the difference between 1945 and now. Brooks' point is that in 1945 there was no the self-involved narcissism we see today and then Glenn wondered about his blogging in light of that:
A question: who among us doesn't see prominent segments of the Church involved in this? Not rallying the Church to resist self-promotion, but engaging in it, indeed at times leading the self-promotion. Always rationalized..."just trying to reach more people for Jesus."

I confess there's a part of me that wants to press the point. However, what are the implications of the three sentences in the previous paragraph? Does this mean no blogs with a connection to a book, like this one? Or if such a blog like CGO can legitimately exist, does it mean no endorsements for the book, as I have placed on the left sidebar? Do descriptions of Contributors constitute self-promotion?

I leap to David Brooks' point, and find it easy to tar and feather 'the other,' but the mere existence of this blog and its features suggest how accommodated I and we (the Contributors) are to self-promotion. What price humility?
It's an excellent question and one that I think has some very complex answers.

First of all, it is quite possible to promote with humility. We are not our products. Producing a product, like say a book, is exercising God's gift to us, and if we promote the product in that fashion, then humility is the order of the day.

The real question is, what do we sell when we promote? Like all media, promotion affects the messages. Like the movie trailer that has every actual laugh from a comedy in it, promotion, i it enthusiasm to do its job sometimes misleads.

In the church we often promote salvation or self-fulfillment when what we offer is transformation and self-denial (which is fulfilling, but you see where the misleading comes in). These things as promotion lack humility as well for they seek gain for the thing instead of gain for what the thing is intended to do.

The problem is not promotion, I am just not sure we have figured out how to do it properly yet.

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