I sat down to feed Allison the other day and found that my usual 4pm show was a rerun, so I started flipping through the channels. I had honestly forgotten that Oprah was on at that time, since I quit the show over a year ago. Even though I enjoy the “makeover” shows and there are some topics that are fun to watch, I found myself being bombarded with humanistic ideas and morals. It wasn’t worth my time or Godly mental health to watch any longer.
But there I was, stuck in a chair and longing to watch something, so I indulged myself and tuned in, hoping for one of those shows that wouldn’t make me shout at the television. I wasn’t so lucky. On the show was a panel of “experts” (basically all motivational speakers) who had contributed to a new DVD entitled “The Secret.” The secret to a happy life, to financial freedom, to the body you’ve always wanted, etc. . . . What was the “secret”? To quote Oprah’s website, and Rhonda, the marketer, er, I mean, discoverer of the “secret”. . .
“The Secret [is] the law of attraction, which is the principle that ‘like attracts like.’ Rhonda calls it ‘the most powerful law in the universe,’ and says it is working all the time. ‘What we do is we attract into our lives the things we want, and that is based on what we're thinking and feeling,’ Rhonda says. The principle explains that we create our own circumstances by the choices we make in life. And the choices we make are fueled by our thoughts—which means our thoughts are the most powerful things we have here on earth.”
That’s it. Now to give Oprah some credit, she pointedly informed us all that she has known the “secret” for years, but just didn’t know it was a “secret.” She’s been telling us all this for years, and I can attest to that, having turned my mind to mush after watching too many hours of her gospel in the past.
And that is exactly what it is – her gospel. And not only hers, although one could argue that she is the biggest voice of it. It really isn’t that different than what Joel Osteen preaches. God wants to bless you, He wants you to have “Your Best Life Now” and all that is missing is us claiming it! Think it is true, act as though it is becoming truth to you in this very moment and it will happen. And as the best false prophets do, there is enough of a nugget of truth in what they speak that it makes it easier to believe. After all, Osteen is a preacher and uses Bible verses to back up his message and Oprah is very religious herself. And then they douse their speeches with true-life stories of those who have obeyed their commands and who are living gloriously happy lives now. The panel was filled with stories of heartbreak, depression, bankruptcy and financial burdens. But now, now they have conquered it all - and you can too!
I tolerated 10 minutes of it before I was so upset I had to change the channel. Back to the Food Network, where you never go wrong, even if it is a rerun. I haven’t stopped thinking about it since, although, and I mourn the thought that millions are accepting this religion and even expecting God to “help those who help themselves.”
The question remains, what if I do all that I can to make my dreams come true, what if I only think good and positive thoughts and I still feel empty? They never address that issue. What if I make my millions and others look up to and adore me, but there is still a void all the adoration fails to fill? Am I just failing in their “system?” Do I just need to think more positive thoughts? But what does this do for me for eternity? It never addresses how I can get my “Best Life Later!”
It never even stops to think that maybe I am not the center of my universe. Maybe the world doesn’t revolve around me. Maybe getting my felt needs fulfilled are not what will really make me happy. Maybe, just maybe, my suffering here on earth is meant to take my eyes off of myself. It never addresses those ideas.
Thankfully Scripture does. I end my thoughts with the wisdom of a man who had everything a heart could desire. This is what he says on the matter. Too bad Oprah won't give his side of the story any airtime . . .
1The words of the Preacher, the son of David, king in Jerusalem.
2Vanity of vanities, says the Preacher, vanity of vanities! All is vanity.
3What does man gain by all the toil at which he toils under the sun?
4A generation goes, and a generation comes, but the earth remains forever.
5The sun rises, and the sun goes down, and hastens to the place where it rises.
6The wind blows to the south and goes around to the north;around and around goes the wind, and on its circuits the wind returns.
7All streams run to the sea, but the sea is not full;to the place where the streams flow, there they flow again.
8All things are full of weariness; a man cannot utter it;the eye is not satisfied with seeing, nor the ear filled with hearing.
9What has been is what will be, and what has been done is what will be done, and there is nothing new under the sun.
10Is there a thing of which it is said, "See, this is new"?It has been already in the ages before us.
11There is no remembrance of former things, nor will there be any remembranceof later things yet to be among those who come after.
*Check back soon for one good thing I did learn from Oprah’s panel and for a great refutation of this false gospel.