Mega Fridays: Ed Young, Jr., Fish & Barrels

In response to last week’s introductory Mega Friday post, one astute commenter said:

This looks like an interesting series. I’m guessing pastorfashion.com will make an appearance in the weeks ahead.

Who am I to argue with those who take the time to read and comment here at From Law to Grace? I do hope that this series will be both interesting and informative. Along the way, I hope that my readers will benefit from these posts on today’s megachurch. Not every Mega Friday will be devoted to the wild, wacky and increasingly bizarre world of some within the celebrity-driven, megachurch culture. From time to time, I’ll share encouraging words about some of our nation’s non-celebrity-driven pastors and megachurches who have been a blessing to me and others. Matt Chandler and the church he pastors, The Village Church — a place where my son and I worshipped during our recent journey to Dallas — come to mind. The churches of the two Johns — MacArthur and Piper — would certainly rank high on any list of faithful, Christ-centered ministries that have been positive influences on countless pastors. There are others to be sure.

But, today’s Mega Friday is one that cannot be avoided, particularly if you want to view the world through the lens of one of the biggest megas — Fellowship Church in Grapevine, TX. When discussing some of the more recent and interesting developments at the megachurch led by Ed Young, Jr., one must always avoid the temptation to start shooting at fish in the barrel. The Pastor Fashion website is just one of those fish — much too easy to shoot. Therefore, I’ll avoid the temptation, mainly because I’m really not sure if http://pastorfashion.com/ is supposed to be a serious site or rather just a mock site designed to amuse. If it’s the latter, it would appear that the now 50 year-old pastor of Fellowship Church is easily amused. Since my Student Pastor and I disagree as to whether the site is mock (him) or real (me), I’ll leave it to others to decide. I guess time will tell.

What time has already told us is that Ed Young, Jr. — and Fellowship Church — continue to influence other pastors and leaders, both within Evangelicalism and the Southern Baptist Convention. Just how are others being influence? One area where the Youngs — both Ed and his wife, Lisa — seem to have prolific influence is talking and writing about sex. The Youngs (yes, both of them) recently released a new series and book by the same name, “SEXPERIMENT: 7 Days to Lasting Intimacy with Your Spouse,”  in which

couples will discover what lies at the intersection of God and sex. And they will see how sex done God’s way can lead to a life punctuated by exclamation marks—a life full of passion, purpose, and pleasure!

There is certainly not a dearth of Christian “sex books” on the market today — Mark and Grace Driscoll’s “Real Marriage: The Truth About Sex, Friendship and Life Together” seems to be the other popular “marriage” book competing for the hearts, minds, and libidos of Christian couples everywhere. However, Ed and Lisa Young take “SEXPERIMENT” to a whole “notha” level. That level just happens to be on the roof of their church. I wish I were making this up, but Ed and Lisa Young spent 24 hours in bed on the top of Fellowship Church to promote a book. Now, if the book they were promoting was the Bible, I might be inclined to give them a pass for this foolishness. But, to be allowed to build a “bedroom” on top of a church — a church where you are supposed to serve as CEO undershepherd — speaks volumes about the state of the Evangelical Church in America, particularly many of the megachurches that seem to influence — for good and for bad — many other churches and church leaders.

Is there not one leader at Fellowship Church who believes that building a bedroom on top of the church for a 24-hour “bed-in” (shades of John and Yoko) to promote a new series — that just also happens to be a new book that Ed and Lisa Young are promoting — is highly inappropriate (not to mention creepy)? Do we really need the Youngs to “shout it from the rooftop that God is ‘pro-sex’?” Who believes that it was necessary for Ed and Lisa to put a bed on top of Fellowship Church to “make a statement that God is ‘pro-sex’ and He wants us to do it His way?”

I would really love to hear your thoughts on this, especially my from my faithful readers in Texas (the state with the most readers of From Law to Grace — thanks). Is this a Texas thing, a megachurch thing, an Ed Young, Jr. thing, a combination of all three, or much ado about nothing? Just remember — bigger isn’t always better and more doesn’t always signify God’s blessings. I’m pretty sure there is a megachurch in Houston that proves that principle. What say you on this Mega Friday?

4 comments for “Mega Fridays: Ed Young, Jr., Fish & Barrels

  1. Lydia
    March 2, 2012 at 8:08 PM

    If there was ever a marketing disaster it had to be when Real Marriage and Sexperiment were released so close together. I realize two different “Christian” niche markets but the secular media did not know that. :O)

    I have been to a few conferences at Ed’s church back in my mega consulting days and I can tell you he works real hard to get that wind blown hair look.

    • March 2, 2012 at 8:57 PM

      Lydia or Should I call you Reverend-ess Lydia 🙂 ,

      With my hair what it is, I’m not going to touch that one 😉 You would think that the megachurch pastors’ association would have worked out the details of the two book releases. I can’s say that I’ve read either book. I’ve seen more reviews for “Real Marriage,” and I even picked it up to look at it earlier this week when I was at the Lifeway store in El Paso. I couldn’t bring myself to spend any of my book allowance on that. But, the bed-in at Fellowship was just too much. Keep up the good work over at Voices. Thanks and God bless,

      Howell

  2. Lydia
    March 2, 2012 at 11:43 PM

    “You would think that the megachurch pastors’ association would have worked out the details of the two book releases”

    You might think you are making a joke but there has been a sort of unofficial seeker mega pastors club. Sort of like a CEO club.

    I am working on an appropriate title. Pastorette sounds too “Gidget” and I am…..er….more mature. Aging like fine wine, here, but don’t tell Peter. :o)

    • March 2, 2012 at 11:49 PM

      Lydia,

      I was somewhat tongue-in-cheek when I mentioned the megachurch pastors’ association. I have no doubt that there is an unofficial club. How else to explain the pulpit exchanges and the conference speaking engagements, regardless of theology or doctrine. It must be late, though. It took me about a minute and several readings to understand why I shouldn’t tell Peter that you are aging like fine wine 🙂 Have a great weekend and God bless,

      Howell

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