When our middle son was a just few weeks old, he was hospitalized because he was having these crazy seizures. It was awful. But the worst part was when the doctor came in and told us they wanted to give him a spinal tap to rule out the possibility of a Herpes infection on his brain.
I looked at my tiny newborn son, and then back up at the waiting doctor, and I was like, “Um...I think he’s still a virgin...."
...Sorry, it's really not funny. Herpes is no laughing matter... *snickers*... No really, don’t go! I’m sorry. I am. I won’t laugh about herpes any more (Ok. That might have been a lie. We’ll have to wait and see).
So the good doctor went on to explain that sometimes Herpes can be passed from mother to infant as the infant passes through the birth canal, and then it can form lesions on the baby’s brain. Horrible. That was a terrifying thought and we still didn’t know why our baby was seizing so we had to consider the likelihood. And even though I didn’t think I had Herpes, and I didn’t think El Chupacabra had herpes, we both sort of shrugged our shoulders and admitted that, given our pre-marital histories, it was certainly within the realm of possibility. Then we begged the doctor to test us for STD's instead of torturing and potentially maiming our precious son, but he said that wouldn’t do the trick, and ultimately we allowed the procedure.
Turns out he didn’t have baby brain Herpes. Phew!
He’s 12 now, completely seizure free, and has grown into the most brilliant, most gorgeous, most amazing middle child I've ever had. And I think he’s still a virgin.
Anyway, the other day I heard detailed report on NPR about how Herpes is spreading like crazy in retirement communities. Like, the kind WHERE OLD PEOPLE GO TO DIE! ...Yeah. Herpes everywhere. *shudder*
That was followed by a report about how the Herp is catching like crotch burning wildfire on high school and college campuses. By the end of those two reports, I was completely convinced that one cannot run to the store for milk without also picking up an unwanted case of Herpes. It’s THAT prevalent. So old people are spreading it around, and young people are spreading it around, and, based on the number of soccer-moms I know who also have it, everyone in the middle is spreading it around.
Then, those two bone chilling reports were followed by a sad one that was all about how the church in North America is shrinking. I listened and shook my head, like, “Man, if only we could spread our Faith as well as we spread Herpes.”. And I was suddenly struck with this great idea for a line of VWM t-shirts that say “Jesus lasts longer than Herpes!” and “Spread Hope not Herpes!”. But then I remembered Christian t-shirts suck...
Anyway, where was I going with all this......?
Oh yeah. My point is that maybe the church needs to take a lesson from Herpes. We need to be getting more intimate with people, I mean, not like that kind of intimate, but maybe we need to invest in the people around us on a deeper level (but not like that). I’m just saying that if we want Jesus to go viral, like Herpes, we’re gonna have to get spiritually naked, bare our souls, share our faith in a way that others can’t even help but to pass it along.
***Not gonna lie, I was a little afraid to post this cause I don’t want to offend anyone who may, or may not, have a raging case of the Herp. This is why I didn’t specify that I do or do not have it. That's between me and Jesus. And El Chupacabra. And my doctor. And on rare occasions by kid's doctor, but only when their having seizures. I'm just gonna leave a dangling question mark, like a mysteriously veiled show of solidarity with my virus carrying friends. Fist bump.***
Soooo, whadaya think? I mean, about the t-shirts?? Slogan suggestions are welcome.