Armodoxy for Today: Get Jesus?
Are you going to tune into the Superbowl this Sunday? If you’ll be watching on TV you’ll have an advantage over those attending the game, because the head of our Church will have a commercial spot during one of the breaks.
The Super Bowl is an event unparalleled in the United States. It attracts a wide variety of people to an annual display of athletics and dramatics. Much more than a football game, the Super Bowl has become a phenomenon with its high-priced tickets and astronomical advertising fees. Let’s get the statistics out of the way first. The average price of a ticket is about $9,000, the stadium holds 65,000+ people, the cost of advertising is $7,000,000 for 30 seconds (yes, that’s a half-a-minute) of airtime, and an estimated 113,000,000 people will view the game on TV and live streams.
The theatrics of the Super Bowl are not limited only to the half-time-show. Actors and celebrities are commissioned to sell everything from alcoholic drinks to food products, from invisible wireless services to very visible luxury vehicles. Of course, it’s all calculated on the returns. If an advertiser is going to spend $7Million for 30 seconds, be sure that they’ve calculated the return will be many times over. That’s good business and has been the business of Super Bowl advertising, until now.
The product? Jesus!
Last year, a Christian website, He Gets Us, set up a beautifully orchestrated campaign of pictures and sayings of Jesus to bring the point home that He gets us! And there’s a good chance they’re going to do it again this year. On a week where Jesus is celebrated by the actions of the warrior and the priest, Saints Vartan and Leon, these commercials make it clear that Jesus is alive and well and talking to the world today. And people are listening! I know because last year, immediately after the ad aired, both sides of the political spectrum – the left and the right – criticized the advertising of Jesus in this manner. Yes, just as he did 2000 years ago, so too now, Jesus is shaking up the establishment.
So they spent $20Million on a minute-and-a-half of advertising and what is their return? In proclaiming that Jesus “Gets us” the purpose (or the calculated return) is to challenge us to “Get Him!”
This coming Sunday is Super Sunday, not because two football teams will carry, throw and kick a football from one side of the field to the other. It’s Super Sunday because God loved us so much that he wanted to get us and so He sent His very best, His only Begotten Son. This Sunday is the “Day of Good Living” followed by the Lenten Season which begins on Monday. Lent is about how we “Get Him.” Yes, God understands us. Yes, “Jesus gets us.” Now the challenge is ours: do we get Him?
The forty-day period of Lent begins with an invitation to “Get Him.” The Armodox practice of abstaining from animal products in our diet and increasing our time in private prayer and acts of charity sets us on a course to meet the Resurrected Lord, at Easter and to take Him with us into our lives. In other words, 40 days of Lent prepares and arms for the 325 days of the year that follow. Get it? If you do, then you’ll be challenged to “Get Him.”
Let us pray, “Lord, I thank you for hearing my prayer and understanding me. As I prepare for the Lenten Season, open my heart to Your love, so that I may grow spiritually, to hear your answers and how Your Word touches my life every day. In Your name, Jesus, I pray. Amen”
Cover: 2023 Luna & Gregory Beylerian