Church Signs

From John Frye:

Julie and I intentionally pay attention to church signs that have sayings on them. On Saturday last we saw a church sign:

BE AN ORGAN DONOR

GIVE YOUR HEART TO JESUS

After we rolled our eyes and got over the mental jolt, we asked ourselves what purpose do these signs and sayings serve?  What goes through the minds of unsuspecting people who are far from and miss God? Did Jesus suffer a heart attack with residual damage? Maybe I am too literal, I don’t know, but it seems real bloody to me. If I give my heart to Jesus, then I die. Is that it? What if everybody gives their heart to Jesus? What will he do with all those donated hearts?

We would like to think the saying is cute, but it’s not. It’s pathetic. It is gibberish to those unskilled in evangelingo—my word for insider-speak that requires the secret dictionary.

One of the most aggravating signs is this:

C H  _  _  C H

WHAT’S MISSING?

U R

When we see this one we have an overwhelming feeling to turn into the parking lot, rush into the church crying, “We just don’t want to be missing anymore! God help us!” Do people really think that sign is doing anything at all redemptive? Or, are people who drive by suppose to think, “Why, aren’t they clever? Did you see that? U R. How so very clever.”

Why not some honest church signs:

GOSSIP SPOKEN HERE, or

WE WELCOME EVERYONE,

ESPECIALLY THOSE WHO ARE JUST LIKE US.

I think the words “Jesus Saves” painted on a rock by the highway is still one of the best signs.

(link – I’ve quoted his entire post.  Hope that’s OK.  I’m quite willing to cut some out if needed.)

My feelings exactly.  Except that perhaps I think even the “Jesus Saves” rock is ineffective and possibly pointless–but it’s certainly the better choice.

4 thoughts on “Church Signs

  1. Simon

    I like “Jesus Saves” when it is accompanied by a picture of a bearded man rolling a 20-sided die.

    But that’s just the D&D gamer geek in me coming out.

  2. Don Hendricks

    My sentiments as well, have you checked out the website with Hell signs from churches. It is very depressing. Gives you the idea that we are going to be partying by the lake of fire and laughing as they writh in pain. sheesh.

  3. Toni

    Like virtually all advertising, I tend to block automatically church signs. However to me the first 2 examples were on the wittier side of the usual evangelical cringiness – maybe I’m just less literal, less affected than you guys. To me, these slogans are straight out of the scripture union church signs handy hints handbook, that would sell alongside Sunday School materials.

    I don’t really care, TBH. Nonnies come in all shapes and sizes and some (not the hip PoMo ones) might even find those funny, in a sad kind of way.

  4. Tammy

    Reminds me of the “Evangicube” (bible version of the rubik’s cube) I once saw and the Hershey’s kisses one guy gave out as “a kiss from Jesus” at the end of a seminar. Kind of makes me cringe, but at the same time so many people thought these ideas were really cool. Go figure. I hope someone out there gets some good from it all and stays less critical than I am.

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