Paige and I decided to watch The Three Amigos the other night because we're awesome. At one point in the movie, Steve Martin's character (Lucky Day) utters the following statement:
“In a way, all of us has an El Guapo to face. For some, shyness might be their El Guapo. For others, a lack of education might be their El Guapo. For us, El Guapo is a big, dangerous man who wants to kill us. But as sure as my name is Lucky Day, the people of Santa Poco can conquer their own personal El Guapo, who also happens to be *the actual* El Guapo!”
I absolutely adore the humor employed in exposing this nonsensicial sentiment often applied to preaching through Bible texts (particularly the Old Testament as though it were not about Jesus and were about us).
The ridiculousness of comparing shyness to imminent physical harm is absurd. That is the joke and Steve Martin expected you to laugh.. I love that the comedic value of this device was so apparent. That is not to say this was a diatribe regarsding preaching, but rather that this principle of making everything about you is a skill set. In principle, I have observed this phenomenon saturating a lot of what is passing for preaching.
I know what people often mean when they employ this strategy of providing application points for the congregation. I know the need to provide a "take home." But sometimes the take home is pondering the glory of God in Christ and His faithfulness to fulfill His promises through unfaithful people. Sometimes there is not a "to do" application for you. .