“I have always believed in God with all my heart…and vampires and werewolves too”

TwilightGangThis, I found out, was the confused “Twilight Gospel” of a 15-something girl who came to our youth group this week. We will call her Sally (not her real name of course.) Young people like Sally and her friends probably go to your church too. They love God…and vampires and werewolves.

Now, as a 50-something senior pastor, I don’t often directly work with the youth, but I’ve talked to a lot of Sally’s in the past. And I have found that our Papa God really likes the Sally’s of the world. This particular experience stirred my heart to write.

The Encounter

Here’s how it went down. We were ending our meeting this particular night, and the youth who were meeting in our lower level were ending theirs about the same time. Apparently, my youth pastor had given Sally some stuff for a Bible study they were going to start.

And as they were walking past me, I heard one of the students telling Sally to remember to read the Bible passage for next time.

Sally said, “But I don’t have a Bible.” The youth pastor, overhearing this said, “We will give you one…just a minute.” And off he went to go fetch a new Bible for Sally.

“But I’m not even a Christian,” she said to her friend as she shrugged.

I smiled.

And this is where I entered into the conversation….

“Would you like to be one? Would you like to know Jesus for yourself? It’s very simple…”
“Well, yeah, I don’t know…uh…I believe in a lot of other things too…”
“Like what?
“I have always believed in God with all my heart…and I believe in vampires and werewolves too…and paranormal activity…”
“Okay. I understand that…but would you like to know Jesus and have Him live in your heart?”
“Ummm…I need to think about it. This is my first time here…I have to go…”
“Okay, no problem…did you enjoy the youth group tonight?
“Yes, very much”
“Will you be coming back then?”
“Oh yes!”
“Okay, maybe we can talk another time.”

She nodded and walked off.

During our passing conversation, I had also heard one of our newly saved, non-vampire loving youth, who was also one of Sally’s friends, whispering out loud to another, “I love it when people talk about Jesus like this!” I asked her as they were leaving to explain it all to Sally when they went home. She had a “will do” smile on her face.

Welcome to the Kingdom of God in 21st Century America (and around the world, for that matter).

And welcome to the ripe harvest field that we’ve been placed into as co-laborers with Christ. A world full of confusion, fear, pain, rejection, loneliness…turned off by our Pharisaical brand of Churchianity, but very much ready to be astounded and awed by the amazing grace and unfathomable love of our Papa God!

What’s Stirring Me Up

You know what? Sally doesn’t need to be told what a wicked sinner she is, or that she’s going to hell for liking Twilight, or Harry Potter, or even that she shouldn’t have a crush on vampire heartthrobs or fixate on werewolves…or whatever else she might be clinging on to feel alive at the moment. What she needs first is to have a personal life-changing encounter with Love.

And I’m talking about a God who is Love (1 Jn.4:8). Because Love is not an argument, or even a doctrine…Love is a Person. And a good dose of this Love will even cast out any paranoiac orphan-like fear we may have about what’s happening to our young Sally’s in this world (1 Jn.4:18).

What Sally really needs is to be introduced to her heavenly Father. The One who is so crazy in love with her, who can’t stop thinking about her, who gives such worth that He bankrupted heaven by paying Jesus so He could be with her (Jn.3:16; Mt.13:45-46).

Yes, when she finally meets Him she’ll find that His perfect Love is full of affection and affirmation, ever-present, ever intimate. She will finally know Him in all His beauty, truly sublime and yet stunningly exquisite, brilliant and splendorous. He’s not like anything she has ever known before, and so much more than her heart could’ve ever hoped for. And nothing, and I mean nothing, will ever be able to stop her from wanting more of this Love.

You see, this generation doesn’t need our canned Romans Road pitches, our condescending tracts…and especially, our self-righteous finger pointing rants. They just need to meet the real Jesus.

And they also don’t need our cheap talk and no action. They need a demonstration of the power of the Spirit, to see the reality of the supernatural Kingdom we represent (1 Cor.2:4-5). So, like Jesus said, if they won’t believe our words, they can believe our miraculous works (Jn.10:25; 37).

No, lusty vampires and werewolves will never stand up to this Kingdom reality, or this God called Love. And the Sally’s of the world would soon find out that His supernatural is “oh so much better” than anyone else’s paranormal out there.

They need to experience a God that is “more real than the ground they’re standing on.” (Thank you, Jonathan David Helser, “Abba”) They deserve a supernatural encounter with the God who turns worlds upside-down, and to know this pure white-hot Love that melts even the coldest and heals the most wounded of hearts. After all, He paid a terribly high price so they could.

I know I’ll be praying for Sally, and all the Sally’s in my world, and when I see her the next time, I really hope we’ll be able to continue where we left off. But if not, I hope someone else will. She deserves it.

I am so humbled and thankful to be used to help Him reach the Sally’s of this world in any way I can.

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About Mel Wild

God's favorite (and so are you), a son and a father, happily married to the same beautiful woman for 36 years. We have three incredible adult children. My passion is pursuing the Father's heart in Christ and giving it away to others. My favorite pastime is being iconoclastic and trailblazing the depths of God's grace. I'm also senior pastor of Cornerstone Church in Wisconsin.
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7 Responses to “I have always believed in God with all my heart…and vampires and werewolves too”

  1. Cyndi Lu says:

    I love thinking of our Father as Papa God. Thank you for sharing and writing. I like what I have been reading from you. I’m looking forward to reading on. 🙂

  2. melwild says:

    Thanks! I really appreciate that. And yes, I too love the endearing nature of Papa God. The Bible translation is “Abba Father” (Rom.8:15; Gal.4:6), which literally means, “Daddy Father!” I have found that God is more about family and relationships than about doctrine (although doctrine is important). Just read how Jesus referred to His Father, the stories He told. John brings this up over 100 times in his writings! Then Paul tells us He’s a family God! (Eph.3:14-15)

    I’ve enjoyed reading your blog too! Blessings to you.

  3. Pingback: Keep it simple… | In My Father's House

  4. N. says:

    This may sound silly, but a random thought popped up in my mind that said ‘God is a true family man!’ I felt like a little kid inside when I thought that…like it really filled me with joy!!

    • Mel Wild says:

      He is the true Family Man! And that joy comes from Him. 🙂

    • N. says:

      Ya know, for some reason it almost seems blasphemous for me to relate to God in that way.! Theres a part of me thats saying “Thats GOD we’re talking about, hes not just some family man…he’s above that! How dare you think that way about him in such a simple way!” And then I end up feeling bad and sad and appologizing to him…should I?

    • Mel Wild says:

      I understand what you’re trying to say but I don’t think it’s blasphemous if you remember that Jesus called God His Father and Paul said His family is in heaven and on the earth (Eph.3:14-15). We have been called His children. Our problem is that we don’t know who we are in Him so we continue to relate to Him like an orphan.
      Everything about God speaks of familial relationship and intimacy as His sons and daughters. But it doesn’t take away from His transcendence as God at all. In fact, it glorifies Him because it shows His true nature, that He IS love!
      Our problem as evangelicals is that we’ve made Him so transcendent that we don’t relate to Him intimately as sons and daughters, which is the whole point of salvation. So, we live like the elder brother in the Prodigal story in Luke 15, never knowing Him as a Father. But God has been looking for a family from eternity. We can see this from Genesis to Revelation. And His Son Jesus made a way for us to become that family. This should only provoke worship and adoration for such love!
      The idea of family came from God, so we can’t be blaspheming something that comes from His heart. I hope that makes sense.

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