Tuesday, October 09, 2012

":a hedge of protection"

photo from "Stuff Christian Culture Likes"
Jonathan Acuff's chapter  on "The Hedge of Protection"(in "Stuff Christians Like") is a classic.  As you can see by the graphic  at left and the Tim Hawkins video at bottom, this s a popular  phrase in Christianese.

Here and below is  his chapter, in full.  It's not really complete without the illustration that accompanies it...so buy the book, already!

I think the uber-popular  Christian prayer request for a  "hedge of protection" is in the Bible, but I'm not sure.  It sounds like something David would have written in the book of Psalms. He's very poetic and our most Bono-like writer.  But a friend of mine once revealed that he’s always found that to be an inadequate security measure. As a child, when his mother would pray that he would have a hedge of protection around him or a hedge of angels around him, he would think, “Anyone can jump a hedge. How hard is that? Forget the hedge of angels, I’m praying for a dome of angels.”

At first I laughed at that story, but the more I thought about it, the more it made sense. These are troubling times, and I’ve never seen a hedge and thought, “That thick collection of bushes is both terrifying and impenetrable.” Maybe instead of a hedge of protection, we should pray for:

A Beaded Curtain Of Wasps

Your enemy would see this from a distance and think it was a standard beaded curtain. “Sweet,” they’d think. ”Hippies. Let’s go steal their stuff.” But as soon as they touched the curtain, they’d be rained down on by wasps that were enraged at being delicately strung together in a beaded curtain formation.

A Trampoline Moat Of Lions

Throwing a plank across the average moat renders it useless. That won’t be an issue though…with the trampoline moat of lions, or T-MOL. You’ve admittedly got to pull insane permits to build this thing. But once you do, trust me, it’s worth it. Few things are as scary and imposing as a pride of lions that have figured out the mechanics of a trampoline. Just imagine a hurricane of fangs and claws and manes bouncing skyward as they “give each other air.”

A Rugby Scrum Of Angels
When people say a “hedge of protection” or a “hedge of angels,” I start imagining a bunch of angels in pleated khakis standing around, bored, waiting for the bus. Forget that. A rugby scrum is where players from both teams lock arms and heads and start swirling around in a tangle of power and aggression and swagger.
That’s what I want angels protecting me to be doing. I want them to be constantly brawling, like some sort of angelic version of the Patrick Swayze movie Roadhouse. When something bad comes my way, the angels don’t have to warm up. They just turn to my foe and say, “You want to get in on this? We got more than enough to go around.” -
Jonathan Acuff's chapter  on "The Hedge of Protection"in "Stuff Christians Like,"   pp 68-70


Hey, thanks for engaging the conversation!