by guest contributor David Drury
Many evangelical Christians carry a terror inside their chest that if they appear less than happy all the time then they will have violated the terms of some sort of Jesus Marketing Contract. (Why would lonely and searching people want to know about Jesus if I don't display ecstatic fulfillment at all times?) To this end, Christian culture puts an emphasis on positivity. How's your walk with God? Awesome! How is your marriage? A blessing! How did that Cowboys game turn out? God honored their hard work! What about the game they lost? God is really teaching them some great lessons! Sorry to hear about your miscarriage. It was in God's will! I heard your mom has cancer. God has a better plan!
It seems many an evangelical Christian is on a mission to convince nonbelievers of the white hot joy that comes with being a Christian (all the time and forever). They may suppose that their pagan friends will one day say:
"Something is different about you. Why are you so happy all the time?"
"I met Jesus!"
"I want what you have!"