I'm not an Oprah fan. I used to be. I was terribly put off by her remarks about Jesus. There are many who share her views that Jesus is not the only way to salvation. There are many who believe we are not in need of any kind of salvation at all. My faith leads me to believe otherwise. And while I respect the right of each person to believe what they may (God is good that way… he doesn't force us to believe His way, he lets us choose for our own self), I personally believe that Jesus is the only way. I'm not going to get into a theology discussion here, or discuss the merits of those who live good lives. I only know what I feel to be true in my own heart. I'm just explaining, if anyone is interested, why I am no longer an Oprah fan. I don't base it on that one comment alone, but as well, the theology that she has publicly embraced, and offers to her millions of viewers. That she has been made a goddess of sorts, makes the offering far more enticing to millions of people who, seeking to fill that God-given void in our hearts and our spirits, will lap it up like kittens with a fresh saucer of warm milk. If Oprah says it, then it must be gospel. Now, I will be the first to admit, that her shows are entertaining, often informative, and I have discovered some really neat folks who have been guests on the show (Mattie Stepanek and Il Divo, being my favorites.) I'm also aware that Oprah does some really great things (albeit sometimes stupid things) with her gazillions, and she is a philanthropist in the truest sense of the word. I'm not about Oprah-bashing.... I'm just no longer a fan who thinks she is All That. I'm working when her show comes on, so whether or not to watch is a non-issue. I will also admit that if there is a scheduled guest that I like, I will tune in, if possible. But it's kind of like an AA meeting. Take what you need (or want, in this case) and leave the rest. But for the most part, I don't watch her any more, and I have canceled my "membership" to her website. Yesterday, due to low hospital census and lack of work, I took the day off. I was in my office doing some chores, and the Oprah show came on. In my busyness, I didn't change the channel. I almost did, because the topic was Spirituality 101. I figured it would be the usual poppycock theologies that she embraces, but I decided to watch while I finished my chores. She had three "Spiritual" people on her panel. I don't remember their names, nor who/what they represented. One was a black male minister of some sort, one was a white male dressed in a priest outfit, (who said that being gay was a blessing from God… and even Oprah said he was the first minister she had heard actually say that!) and one was a white female who had written a book of some kind. I'm not going to get into what they discussed, nor how they advised the people who Skyped in. What I'm going to focus on is the comparison between two women who Skyped in with questions for the "leaders". You can read more on the episode here on her website if you want.
The first Skyper was what appeared to be a young/middle-aged black woman who seemed to have the weight of the world on her shoulders. She and her husband had invested all their savings into a business venture (I forgot what kind), and in these tough economic times, their business was failing. She said she had many family members who were dependent upon her success at running the business, and even had a grandchild whom she was raising. Her question was how best to survive this situation and remain positive and hopeful. It was very easy to sympathize with this woman, and I truly wish her well.
The second Skyper was a white woman, hard to tell her age, maybe 30s/early 40s. She was sitting in a very nicely-decorated room, her hair, makeup and nails finely done, wearing a really pretty outfit. Her dilemma was: How can I feel good about myself when I am taxiing my kids around and doing laundry and cleaning the toilet? She was also fretting that she is identified as "somebody's mom". [Okay, I can identify with that, especially with teenagers. I was always "Whitney's mom". The main difference is… I had no problem with that. It brought me great joy to introduce myself to her friends or their parents as "Whitney's mom". I still do it, even though Whitney is all grown up!] She continued to whine that her husband works and is also in law school, and it was a "family decision" to support him. But "I feel like I want it to be MY turn."
I pretty much stopped my chores and sat there with my jaw dropped to the floor. You have got to be KIDDING me!! Lady. How can you possibly sit on national TV and whine about your poor, pitiful existence. Do you not realize how many people out there would LOVE to be identified as "Somebody's Mother"??? Women who have been unable to bear children of their own, or mothers who have lost their children?? Not to imply that you don't love your kids, I'm sure you do, but Get Out!! And you want to feel important when you are doing the laundry and cleaning your toilet?? Do you watch the news? Do you realize that every day people are losing the opportunity to do those mundane chores when they are forced to leave their homes? Do you see people who live in cardboard boxes? Do you see people in third world countries who would love to even drink the water from your clean toilet? Do you see children with flies and bugs crawling on their naked little bodies? They don't even own clothes. I am sure those mothers would be delighted to wash clothes on the rocks down by the river… if they only had clothes to begin with.
Ma'am, I hate to burst your bubble… but it already IS your turn. You have no idea how blessed you are to have children. To have a car and gasoline with which to taxi them around. To have friends by whom you are known as "Your Kids' Mom". That your husband has a job. That he is able to attend law school, likely securing an even greater financial future for your family than you already enjoy. That you not only have clothes to launder, but the appliances and the electricity with which to do so. That you are able to sit on a nice porcelain potty, and that you can buy the cleaning products with which to clean it.
I hope when you replay your DVRd version of Oprah, that you are ashamed and embarrassed by your narcissism and hedonistic presentation. You are indeed a pitiful woman... not because of what you lack.... but because you are too blind to see what you DO have.