iPod Devotional Series: What If?

David Burchett

Griffin made the remarks over the weekend upon receiving the award for Outstanding Reality Program for her show "My Life on the D-List."

"I guess hell froze over," said Griffin, whose show overtook ABC's Extreme Makeover: Home Edition. "A lot of people come up here and thank Jesus for this award. I want you to know that no one had less to do with this award than Jesus.” Holding up her statuette, Griffin topped off her off-script speech by saying, "Suck it, Jesus. This award is my god now."

That offends me. I made a mental note to avoid all things Griffin (TV shows, CD’s, comedy shows, etc) in the future. But that was the end of my reaction. What Kathy Griffin thinks about Jesus doesn’t register a blip on my radar. Note to my fellow believers. This is in the brochure.

And all nations will hate you because you are my followers. But everyone who endures to the end will be saved. When you are persecuted in one town, flee to the next. (Matthew 10, NLT)

What an odd marketing campaign Jesus launched to sell this new faith. The world will hate you. You will have lots of trouble on this earth. Not exactly a Madison Avenue approach. Picture this advertisement for a new product.

“Buy our product and you will be hated and persecuted! No interest financing available now!”

So when a spare comedian takes a cheap shot at Jesus I am not at all surprised. I ache for her. I would never make such a mean spirited comment about anything or anyone dear to her for publicity or a cheap laugh. Her comments reveal all you need to know about her heart.

The response from some of the Christian community was predictable.

Griffin’s remarks immediately drew harsh criticism Monday from Catholic League President Bill Donohue, who called on the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences to denounce what he called “vulgar in-your-face brand of hate speech.”

Donohue called for censoring of her remarks and an apology. I think Bill Donohue is a good man doing what he believes is right. As for me, I do not want either. Let her remarks be heard. And what good would an apology do?

All of this leads to today’s iPod Devotional song. Nichole Nordeman is one of my favorites. She is a thoughtful writer. Nichole is honest about her faith and her struggles. The song today is called “What If” and it deals with the doubt she feels when others challenge her belief in Jesus.

What if you’re right?
And he was just another nice guy
What if you’re right?
What if it’s true?
They say the cross will only make a fool of you
And what if it’s true?

What if he takes his place in history
With all the prophets and the kings
Who taught us love and came in peace
But then the story ends
What then?

People who never have a single doubt scare me. I love Nordeman’s honest and aching questions. I have wrestled with all of those. I have read the arguments of Sam Harris and Christopher Hitchens. I do not live this life of faith blindly. But I have come to a different conclusion than Harris, Hitchens and Ms Griffin.

Nichole Nordeman’s song echoes my questions to those who mock my faith.

But what if you’re wrong?
What if there’s more?
What if there’s hope you never dreamed of hoping for?
What if you jump?
And just close your eyes?
What if the arms that catch you, catch you by surprise?
What if He’s more than enough?
What if it’s love?

It is pointless to debate your faith with those who refuse to acknowledge even the remotest possibility of God or faith. I know they feel the same way about me. Comments like Ms.Griffin’s are designed to evoke an emotional response. Praying God’s wrath on them does not follow the example that Jesus set. Luke relates a story that applies to this debate.

But the people of the village did not welcome Jesus because he was on his way to Jerusalem. When James and John saw this, they said to Jesus, “Lord, should we call down fire from heaven to burn them up?” But Jesus turned and rebuked them.  So they went on to another village. 

James and John are just like you and me. We want to get’em!

“So you are going to disrespect my Lord? Well we’ll show you! Can we burn them up? Can we Lord? Can we?”

And I picture Jesus looking at them with a mixture of patience, love and sadness. They still didn’t get it. And neither do we. Jesus knew that the Father calls men to faith. Some respond. Some don’t. Jesus simply said to move to the next village. Judgment and justice will happen in God’s timing and not mine or yours.

I am unshaken by attacks on Jesus. I feel sorry for Kathy Griffin. I hope that she will someday ponder the questions that Nichole Nordeman poses.

What if you’re wrong? What if it’s love? What if He’s more than enough? What if?

Dave Burchett is an Emmy Award winning television sports director, author, and Christian speaker. He is the author of When Bad Christians Happen to Good People and Bring'em Back Alive: A Healing Plan for those Wounded by the Church. You can reply by linking through