I was going to do a year in review post, but I figured 1) it’s more than a bit cliche and 2) trying to predict the future is a lot more fun.
So, I’m gonna try something a little different.
I’m going to tell you everything (American Jesus related) that’s going to happen in 2014!!
More or less.
I will keep with the cliché, though, and offer up a year appropriate amount of predictions, but to keep things interesting I’ll offer up the odds on my predictions coming true.
I hope you enjoy.
And if you don’t, then ask yourself this – “Why do I hate joy and happiness and cute little puppies?”
1. I’ll be asleep when the clock strikes midnight on Jan. 1
There was a time when I could pull an all-nighter, no problem. That day has long since passed. Heck, I couldn’t even stay awake for a late night showing of The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug and I was DYING to see that movie. Throw a baby in the mix and I can pretty much guarantee I’ll be asleep by 10:30pm.
Odds – I’m getting tired just thinking about it
2. Pat Robertson will finally retire
Ok, this is probably just wishful thinking, but everybody’s gotta have a dream, right?
Odds – 20:1
3. A Christian celebrity will say something ridiculous and the internet will freak out
I know, I’m really going out on a limb on this one. The only real question is who will it be? Yeah, who am I kidding? We all know it will be ______________.
Odds – Do we really need odds for this one?
4. Way too many Christians will blindly and passionately defend that aforementioned ridiculousness no matter how
racist bigoted hateful moronic ridiculous it is
It’s free speech! It’s in the Bible! Christians are being persecuted! Look, if this is you or has been you or you think it will be you when the time comes, could you do the rest of us a favor and maybe add a little creativity to your Chicken Little outrage? You guys are getting so predictable I could create a controversy, script your response, and get it all right word for word and verse for verse. Actually, that was basically an episode of 30 Rock one season and it was awesome. Just like the rest of the show.
Bonus predication: A slightly smaller, but still significant portion of Christians will smugly dismiss the controversy as not as important as other admittedly important issues…which they conspicuously never ever mention until they can use them to shame people they disagree with.
Odds – Dear God, please let this madness end
5. Chick-Fil-A will officially become a sacrament
Chick-Fil-A has already become the Wittenburg Door of 21st century evangelicalism, the place to stage a protest against every perceived slight against Christianity, real or otherwise. I predict a church or pastor or patriot somewhere will take the next logical step and switch out bread and wine for nuggets and lemonade in the celebration of the Lord’s Supper. Personally, I think that sounds deliciously awesome and would probably be the most successful effort to get new visitors in the door ever in the history of ever. Speaking of ever in the history of ever….
Odds – 75:1
6. Nicholas Cage’s Left Behind will be the greatest movie ever in the history of ever
Yeah, probably not. But that’s not gonna stop me from being the first in line to see it!!
Odds – 1,987,253,016:1
7. The rapture won’t happen in 2014
Most people like to predict when the rapture is going to happen. But I’m gonna take the road less traveled on this one and say it’s not happening next year. In fact, I’m gonna go one step further and predict that it’s never going to happen. Ever.
Odds – Absolutely Positively Guaranteed
8. Joel Osteen will publish the same book he’s been publishing for the last 10 years
Behold the titles of Joel’s last few books:Break Out!: 5 Keys to Go Beyond Your Barriers and Live an Extraordinary Life, I Declare: 31 Promises to Speak Over Your Life, Every Day a Friday: How to Be Happier 7 Days a Week, Become a Better You: 7 Keys to Improving Your Life Every Day,Your Best Life Now: 7 Steps to Living at Your Full Potential. Seriously, the man has only written 1 book and just keeps switching out the title and cover…and people keep buying it. So, I’ve got a good feeling he’s going to republish his book of magic spells once, maybe 5 more times this year and I’m guessing, ok hoping it will be titled Let’s Be Honest: 7 Reasons While You’ll Buy Anything I Put My Name No Matter How Ridiculous It Is Because You Think I Can Make You Rich. Ok, that title probably needs a little work. But not much.
Odds – Even Money (Even more money if you say the right prayer)
9. Mark Driscoll will actually write his own book…for the first time ever
But Zack, hasn’t Mark written tons of books already? Apparently not. With all the controversy surrounding Driscoll’s rampant plagiarism and the exposure of his (and other Christian celebrity’s) prolific use of ghostwriters, I’m getting Driscoll gets spooked about losing out on book sales and finally writes a book on his own.
Odds – 3:1
10. There will be a Duck Dynasty spinoff – Duck Church
If the controversy over Phil Robertson’s recent comments taught us anything, it’s that countless Christians consider him the model of Christian virtue and will blindly defend whatever he says even if they’ve never actually read his words and are just going off their friend’s rant on Facebook. So, given that and given the fact that Duck Dynasty branded Christian merchandise is already a plague threatening the future of Christianity (seriously, do we need a Duck Dynasty devotional or a Duck Dynasty cross necklace??), I’m predicting that a rabid fan or 2 or 12 starts Duck Church and appoints ole Phil as Duck Pope.
Odds – 20:1
11. A pastor somewhere will twerk during their sermon
They may do it live or it may be part of a video, but either way it’s going to happen. And not because it’s timely, astute, and relevant to the gospel, but because it’s none of the above and that pretty much sums up evangelical Christianity today. Speaking of a total lack of creativity….
Odds – 5:1
12. There will be way too many World Cup themed sermon series and they will all be terrible
This one is a pretty easy call. See the above mentioned lack of creativity plaguing evangelicalism for the reasons why.
Odds – Somewhere in a church office somewhere in America the sermon planning has already begun
13. Russell Crowe’s Noah will inspire Kirk Cameron to hunt for “the real Noah’s Ark”
In 2013, despite the best efforts of all of humanity throughout time, Kirk finally solved the problem of evil. So, I figure it only makes sense that this lover of biblical literalism takes on another great mystery that has challenged humanity across the millennia – the location of Noah’s ark. But honestly? I just want this to happen because I think it would make for a disastrously amazing reality show/movie/maybe both.
Odds – 5:1
14. Pope Francis will keep being awesome…and start disappointing
It’s no secret that I’m a big fan of Pope Francis. So are a ton of other people. He just seems to get it. I’m guessing he’ll keep doing amazing things in the new year…but he’ll also start disappointing those of who wish he would do more to bring deeper reforms in the church. Some of that disappointment has already begun, but if there was one prediction I hope I’m wrong about, it’s this one. Well, the second half at least.
Odds – Even Mammon
Well, those are my predictions for 2014. When you look into your crystal ball, what do you see happening in the new year?