“Coolness” is a difficult state of being to tie down, but a certain not-caring, an ease, a been there, done that, attitude are part of it. “Cool” does not follow, “Cool” sometimes leads, but generally Cool hangs out being fabulous. Cool is definitely not on fire! When I think of “Cool”, I think of Fonzie on Happy Days. Someone who has the aspects of a leader without assuming the responsibilities. Someone admired for their detachment from the dominant social matrix. We all want to be “Cool”, don’t we? Effortlessly in-style, self-confident, self-assured, never taken by surprise, never overcome by anything. Cool has seen it all, done it all, and excelled in every bit of it. The World’s Most Fascinating Man? Extremely Cool.
But I am a Christian, and Christianity is not Cool. I am enjoined to treat the God of the universe with awe, wonder and fear. I am required to obey various levels of earthly authority* with careful thoroughness and good cheer. Obedience to authority? Sooo not Cool. Next you’re going to tell me that Christians are told to ask for things and be thankful and rejoice in what they’re given. (Uh oh). I’m also supposed to be diligent in my work and to be humble, giving the glory to God alone.
Worldlings, at least the Western versions, have been striving for Cool for the last fifty years at least. We, as Christians, need to separate ourselves from this paradigm. Instead of Cool, may I suggest Unearthly? After all, this Earth is not our home. This isn’t our final destination. Like travelers to another land, we can enjoy the sights and the hotels. We should do our best to live how we ought in this foreign land. But we will go Home someday. However long our stay, however pleasant, someday the ship will sail – and we’ll not even take the clothes on our backs.
Let us each strive to be ambassadors from that foreign land. Into this world, which has become a cesspool, we can bring Light and the faint fragrance of Paradise. Laughing, working, stopping and staring at the moon or a blossom or a baby’s face… walking through life without masks but with an overabundance of joy, we can remind the World that there are immortals** in their midst.
*insofar as they don’t violate the prime directive: obedience to God
** Yes, everyone is immortal, but some of us are going to enjoy it.