I’ve done a little reading over the past couple of weeks regarding the Paris Hilton drama. One thing I’ve noticed is that she has been to church and that she is apparently reading the Bible while in prison.
I’m sure when most people read those stories they had a cynical reaction. It would seem more plausible to believe that it is all for the publicity than it is for serious spiritual seeking. But I would say that as Christians it really doesn’t matter whether we think it is publicity or sincere.
The fact of the matter is that she darkened the door of a church and apparently is picking up a Bible and reading it. Has she ever read it before in her life? I have no idea. But as Christians we believe these things to be true:
For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.
Hebrews 4:12 (ESV)
For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven and do not return there but water the earth, making it bring forth and sprout, giving seed to the sower and bread to the eater, so shall my word be that goes out from my mouth; it shall not return to me empty, but it shall accomplish that which I purpose, and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it.
Isaiah 55:10-11 (ESV)
I can’t possibly know Paris Hilton’s heart and motives. But I do know that some of the most unlikely people have been drawn to God – think Saul/Paul. No one would have expected him to become a champion for the cause of Christ, and yet look at what God did in his life.
Some will say, “Sallie, you can’t possibly think that Paris Hilton could be saved and really live a sanctified, Christ-honoring life!” Yes, I can. Would she face unique obstacles? Absolutely. Would it be hard at times? No doubt about it. But impossible? “For nothing will be impossible with God.” (Luke 1:37 ESV)
If we believe it is (almost) impossible for Paris Hilton to be saved and we dismiss this idea quickly, what does it say about our beliefs about the Holy Spirit? The Word of God? The sinfulness and lostness of ALL people apart from Christ? Being dead in our trespasses and sins? Why is it possible that God would save us, dead in our sins, and not Paris Hilton?
So, have you prayed that God would open her eyes? That she would pick up the Bible many times while in prison? That the Holy Spirit would guide her eyes to the passages she needs to read when she picks up that Bible? That the Holy Spirit would quicken her spirit and call her to true, biblical repentance? Without Christ, she is lost. Just as lost as your friend or next-door neighbor that you pray for.
Would you pray for her?
I had similar thoughts about Anna Nicole Smith when she passed away. If God can change my life for the better, he can change Paris Hilton’s.
Yes, my dear, and excellent point.
Lindsey @ enjoythejourney
We don’t watch tv much and I read my news online, but I’m overwhelmed with the whole “Paris thing.” I avoid it like the plague.
Yes, I can and will pray for her. But moreover I pray that we as Americans will overcome our love affair with celebrity life and focus more on our own homes. It amazes me still that more people vote for American Idol than they do in Presidential elections (I’m speaking for adults, not kids who don’t have a choice in the matter).
You are absolutely right to remind us of this. I feel ashamed that I have not prayed for her. Thank you, Sallie.
I must humbly admit that I had missed the point of the law! of course the law is to teach us that we are sinners.I was so focused on her (seeming to me) attitude of being “above the law” that I forgot to pray that the law (this experience) would show Paris her own sinfulness so that she could realize her need for a Savior.
Next time I thing of her, hear, or read about her I will remember to pray for her.
Thanks for the reminder.
Sallie, glad to have found your blog out here in blogosphere land. I have to admit, I haven’t- but I will now!! Thank-You for a great post. I was one of those many thought God would never be able to reach, I’m sure. I was a rebeliious teenager and a live-for-the party college student. And it runs in our family, let me tell ya! Lol! But as you found in the word, NOTHING is impossible with God…
and He faithfully answers our prayers with Awesome Deeds! Thank You, Lord!! xoxo
Ouch! Excellent post. Thanks for the reminder that no one is beyond the reach of our great Redeemer!
Thank you so much for this post! Very convicting! I admit that I have felt bad for her this past week because of some of the really hateful things I’ve seen posted about her this but it hadn’t really occurred to me to move past emotionalism and actually pray for her.
Thank you for this thoughtful post. I needed to read this…and it applies to others in my life, not just wayward celebrities. I will definitely pray for P!
Sallie, I really needed to read this post. I have developed quite an attitude toward Paris and your post helped me to remember what is right. I hope you don’t mind that I linked to it from my blog.
Take Care and thanks again.
Just another reminder of why jail/prison ministry is SO important.
God moves in hearts in mighty ways when he has their complete attention.
My husband has been so encouraged by prison ministries.
thank you for that reminder. I often get fed up with the celebrity, actor news stuff. and tend to tune it out. Never really thought about them as opportunities for pray for their salvation. So thanks for the reminder. Nothing more powerful than the prayers of the saints. 🙂
I haven’t read much about Paris, but I’ve been working on a post in my mind about how sad I am for these women like her and Brittany and Lindsey. These girls never had a chance at a normal life. They were made icons before they were old enough to have a say. I blame their families for first creating and now enabling these narcissistic, self-destructive girls, and I feel so, so sorry for them. I will join you in prayer for Paris and others. May God have mercy on them, and there but for the grace of God go I.
Ouch! I needed to hear that. And I don’t think it’s just celebrities either. There are women in my own life “about town” that I often view with disdain for the same reasons, and instead of judging them, I should be praying. If God can save and restore a messed up gal like myself, who says He can’t do that for anyone else? Boy, did I really need that kick in the proverbial pants!
I hadn’t thought about praying for Paris. I do sometimes think about Susan Atkins. She was one of the Manson girls, the one that admitted to killing Sharon Tate. She’s still in jail and I read that she became a Christian. I first thought that she did it as a scam. But I’ve never seen her interviewed and she does not participate in the television shows done on Manson, like the other Manson “girls” do. If Christ can change her and Chuck Colson, anyone can be saved if they only ask.
I just told my husband the other day what a great witness and influence she could have if she is genuine about praying and reading her Bible while in jail. You wrote an awesome post reminding us to pray for everyone that is in a position of influence. Thank you and God bless!
You are all very welcome! I’m glad this post resonated with so many others. 🙂