Yep. I am striving to become a Jesus freak.
I was profoundly impacted by Elder Anderson’s statement, “As the world speaks less of Christ, let us speak more of Him.” (General Conference, October 2020) Centuries ago, Nephi said the same thing. “…we talk of Christ, we rejoice in Christ, we preach of Christ, we prophecy of Christ, and we write of Christ…. that our children may know to what source they may look for a remission of their sins.” (2 Nephi 25:26). Now I join the chorus. I am speaking more of Christ.
The Chosen speaks of Christ. It is a privately produced, crowd funded television series about the life of Christ. Watching it does for me what all great movies do; it brings the hero into my life. In this case, the hero is Jesus. After watching an episode, powerful scenes, featuring Christ, replay in my thoughts for days. The show literally brings Christ into my heart and mind, where He should be.
Once, at then end of an episode, I saw Dallas Jenkins, the director/writer/producer, wearing a t-shirt that said, “Binge Christ”. What an idea! We binge eat chocolate, binge watch T.V. shows, and binge buy in shopping malls. Michael Mantell, a clinical psychologist, said all types of bingeing are “ways of dealing with negative emotions...” (https://greatist.com/happiness/science-why-we-binge#action-plan) It seems to me that bingeing Christ is the best way to deal with negative emotions. It is also the best way to build positive emotions. His path of one of truth and love and joy. “I am the light and life of the world,” He proclaimed. (3 Nephi 11:11)
So I asked for, and received, a Binge Christ t-shirt for my birthday, planning to “talk more of Christ”. I imagined wearing the shirt would proclaim my faith and hoped it would spark conversations that would bring Christ into the lives of others, changing their lives for good.
I have worn my Binge Jesus hoodie twice in public and the effect was not what I anticipated. I thought wearing it would be a statement to others but it turns out wearing it is a statement to me. No one said anything to me about my shirt however I realized I was publicly presenting myself as His disciple and that I had better behave in a manner that brings credit to His name. Was whining to the bank teller about customer service frustrations appropriate for someone wearing a Binge Jesus shirt? Maybe not. (I changed my whine about past interactions to a statement of thanks for the current service.) Was deciding not to stand in ovation at the end of a high school play when everyone else was on their feet, an act of love or mercy? Probably not. (After failing to be gracious, I turned the hoodie inside out so people would not credit my small-minded act to Him.) Wearing my Binge Jesus clothes has made Him a greater presence in my life.
I guess that is what bingeing is all about, bringing large amounts of something into our lives.