Day 3 – Not Fame, Room for the Lame – 2023

Day 3 – Not Fame, Room for the Lame – 2023

“The lame I will make the remnant, and those who were cast off, a strong nation.” 

Micah 4:7 

Read Micah 4:6-8 

When have you felt left out, cast off, lame or shamed? Are you weary of appearing lame (or just plain) on social media? Are you weary of failing to be “in,” not making the varsity team, or not having standing at work or status in social circles? Rejoice! God flips the societal measuring stick and its values, gathering up the cast-off nobodies to make them a “strong nation.” This passage points to a radically encouraging reality: we can let go of grasping for status in the world and rest in the status we have in God’s upside-down Kingdom. 

Micah encourages, but also challenges. Which measuring stick do we use, society’s or God’s? In her book Celebrities for Jesus: How Personas, Platforms, and Profits are Hurting the Church, Katelyn Beaty states that the problem is not just celebrities themselves, but also how other Christians enable and foster celebrities. The American church has overall mimicked celebrity culture rather than challenge it. 

Beaty likens the allure of celebrity to the allure of the ring in Lord of the Rings. It is not a spiritually neutral tool. She observes that Jesus refused to do good things in the wrong way. Beaty advocates for a return to the small, the quiet, the uncool, the ordinary. Beaty’s challenge sounds similar to God’s focus in Micah. What are ways you feel a pull to the opposite? How might you choose intimacy over fandom and prioritize flesh-and-blood relationships over mediated ones? 

God, thank you that the weary parts of our being that feel lame and cast off can rest in your love. During this Advent may we reflect on how Jesus’ humble birth challenges societal fascination with and trust in celebrities. 

Advent Devotions
Mark D. Baker, Ph.D.

Mark D. Baker, Ph.D.

Professor of Mission and Theology Fresno Pacific Biblical Seminary


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