The American Idol finale took in 23.8 million viewers. They also boasted on several occasions that over 100 million votes were cast for the final crown. Doing that math tells us the average viewer voted 4.201 times.

But what has me hung up this morning is the religious fight we have turned the program into. Be faithful to cast your 4.201 votes for the “Married Christian Clean Cut Worship Leader” and do NOT vote for the “guy-liner” wearing, drag(ish) dressing, possible homosexual and quite possibly more talented singer.

Is this our modern day Christian Crusade? To vote for the most “Christian” talented amateur singer in America? In case you haven’t noticed, this year’s American Idol competition followed suit to the classic battles of Christian Idols past. Consider the epic sagas of Carrie Underwood, Reuben Studdard, Fantasia Barino, and Jordan Sparks (who should have come in second to Melinda Doolittle and I’m still bitter about it).

Are we truly working toward fulfilling the Great Commission by voting 4.201 times for our favorite most-Godly singer every year in May? Is this what our message should be to the world? “We kinda care about talent but we really care about church attendance – and we vote!”

Then there’s the classic self-centered, me-infatuated pushy, bossy and disruptive group-segment member like Tatiana del Toro who throw hissy fits one moment and then “Thank Jesus” for getting her through Hollywood week the next. Hmmmm, I wonder if Jesus giving you a standing-“O” for that every un-Jesus like attitude . . .

The undeniable fact is American Idol is mostly a Christian-driven program. Last year they had the final 10 contestants sing “Shout To The Lord” producing the single most awkward rendition of that song EVER to be caught on Television.

Should we care whether or not a Christian dominates in a show because the it’s popular and fun and we have a chance to turn a good Christian worship leader into the next Jack Johnson?

I wonder if this should be the standard for who we invite over for dinner, who we give money to, who we assist in their time of need? Is this the call of Christ on our hearts? “A Vote for Kris is a Vote for Jesus! And the world needs to hear that Christians care about Pop Idols too!”

I am convicted this morning of the words Jesus gave regarding who we must pay attention to: “The next time you put on a banquet, don’t just invite your friends and family and rich neighbors, the kind of people who will return the favor. Invite some people who never get invited out, the misfits from the wrong side of the tracks. You’ll be—and experience—a blessing. They won’t be able to return the favor, but the favor will be returned—oh, how it will be returned!—at the resurrection of God’s people.” Luke 14:12-14 (MESSAGE).

Those are my thoughts at the moment. And if they agitate you, fear not, you are only 8 months away from doing it all over again and this post will be long forgotten.