Happy Birthday Mr. Potato Head


Today marks a significant milestone in American culture.  Sixty years ago Mr. Potato Head came to life on TVs across the country.  In fact, he was the first product ever to be marketed directly to children. So, when you kids remind you incessantly about toys they see during commercial breaks – you can thank Sir Spud.

During the news report this morning an expert commented on why this toy has done so well for so many generations.  The many accessories encourage creativity from children.  A rep for the toy maker noted that there are over 300 parts available.  Among my favorites are the sets with Star Wars names like Artoo-potatoo and Darth Tater.  So there’s some huge number of potential combinations so kids can compose a truly unique presentation.

Brace yourself for the Christian parallel.

Maybe that’s a reason so many people have left church.  Before anybody gets irate, be assured that the only rules to a creative spiritual journey with Jesus is the Bible.  For decades, even centuries, church-goers have left it up to church leadership to tell them how to engage with their Savior through Christian service.  What if we gave people freedom, guidance and empowerment to do their own thing?  Church would truly represent the whole body instead of a few believers.  If God has put the church together the way he wanted it to be (1st Corinthians 12), with spiritual gifts and passions he has given his people put to use, maybe we should try to see the picture he put together?  And, Christians would engage in their walks much more.

Talk with God about the passions he’s given you and how he’d like you to use them.  Before you know it you’ll be off your spiritual tater-tush and living life to the fullest extent.


8 thoughts on “Happy Birthday Mr. Potato Head

  1. Perhaps the lack is not found solely in the expectations (or lack thereof) in the leadership – granted that is a problem…you can’t spoon-feed ppl all their lives and then expect them to take responsibility – but perhaps the real problem is the fact that these “church goers” you reference are trusting in and looking to a very specific list of “works” because they neither understand nor embrace the only religion in the world that doesn’t rely on works, rather, grace. If one finds himself engaged in religious works apart from producing fruits of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness and self control, it might be an indication that he needs to examine himself to see whether he is in the faith.

    • You’re absolutely right. Nobody can make somebody else use their creativity. I’m afraid I should have emphasized the responsibility of the churchgoers as much as church leadership. My last paragraph encouraging people to talk with God about the passions he’s given them urged them to engage but fell short of appropriately attributing their part in the whole thing. Thanks so much for the clarification.

      • =) I think you’re right on with the failure of the leadership to not only expect, but engage people to do that which God is leading…but if they did that then who would do all the things *they* want done? It’s like parents with children…if the parents never give or expect responsibility, none will magically appear. The bottom line is that we are all called to do whatever the Lord leads…I just wonder how many in the church are actually following the Lord at all. Sorry for my cynicism! I just read this: http://www.ncfic.org/weblogmodule/view/id/1071/src/@random493e73d2154bd/

      • I believe the answer is to give people the freedom to fail. Faith is risky business and not everything works, but any learning process means using the wisdom gained from our failures and trust Jesus to lead us through them. Not only do leaders have to be willing to try something crazy that might not work, everybody else has to be willing to dream about what could be and give it a go. The church grows the most where the risks involved in being a Christian are the highest. We have little risk as Jesus followers in this country, so there are many Christian wanna-be’s in the church. Since risk doesn’t come to us, I believe it’s up to us to pick a fight with the Evil one, as Jesus said he came to do (“I haven’t come for peace, but a sword” Matt 10:35).

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