When you face that situation next time, Derek Rishmawy has some great advice. His article is actually about handling Christian Celebrity Derangement Syndrome, and he has some terrific comments about how hard it is to say anything sane about people like John Piper, Mark Driscoll, and Rachel Held Evans. So make sure you head over there and read his whole post.
But I particularly enjoyed his advice for reading things you don’t agree with. Here’s what you do.
- Before you read the article, breathe.
- Count to 10.
- Read the article slowly noting key nouns, verbs, modifiers, and transition clauses.
- Count to 10 again.
- Read it slower.
- Now go ahead and tweet it out with the appropriate commentary.
- Don’t read the article.
Brilliant. I can just hear a mom whispering to her child, “If you can’t read anything nicely, don’t read anything at all.”
Obviously there’s a bit more involved, but you get the point. If you race into an article with your adrenaline receptors on high, your reticular activator going full blast, and your flux capacitor in overdrive, you’re in trouble (especially since that last one is going to land you in the middle of a gunfight in 1885). So slow down. If you’re not going to read the article carefully, prayerfully, and productively, walk away.