from Rachel: Letter to Oprah

Here’s the letter
And here’s what prompted it

“Dear Oprah,

“[I love your show… blah blah blah] I also love your new song. I think that was so terrific of Paul Simon to write that for you. The song is running through my head at the moment because as he sings about you ‘A story in your eye / Well, speak until your mind is at ease,’ I feel I have to begin drafting this letter so I can get a good night’s sleep (Otherwise, I’ll wake up at four or five still composing it (I’m sorry, that’s when you get up, isn’t it? I admire your stamina, but I’m glad my two-year-old lets me sleep past 7:30).

“For some time I wanted to write to you about a couple of subjects, but I don’t really like to write letters. So I waited for incentive; the show on Tuesday, January 30 provided it. Now rather than just asking you questions, maybe I can help answer a few of yours. I realize that you often just play devil’s advocate so that all the viewpoints will be aired, that you probably try to avoid giving your own beliefs so as to not to appear judgmental, and that maybe there is some rule, written or unwritten, against allowing a debate about religious beliefs on a non-Christian station. Still, considering the directions you kept trying to lead the discussion, I just feel the need to ask you a couple of questions.

“I grew up Baptist, and I now attend an Evangelical Free Church, so I expect you’ll understand any church lingo I might use. Please forgive me, and don’t be don’t be offended if I tell you a lot of things you already know, but I can’t be sure where you are spiritually from the hints you’ve dropped over the years. You’re pretty good at hiding your personal beliefs.”

We found this letter in the office this past Wednesday. I don’t know if you ever completed it – we only seem to have half the letter if you did – but the page also has notes as to what prompted you to write it.

“Oprah can’t understand why God, who is so big and powerful, would be jealous.

“‘Why would God be jealous of anything I could do or anybody else I know?’”

“Oprah also asked Kathy (outspoken audience member) if a person never heard Jesus’ name, but followed his teaching, which way would he go?

“Also, the point came up of the worst sin but nobody actually stated the only unforgivable sin.

“Are you a believer – have you ever asked Jesus into your heart as your own personal savior and asked him to forgive your sins?

“Sophia was wrong:

“‘I am the Way, the Truth, and the Light. No one comes to the father except through Me.

“‘Liar, Lunatic, Legend, or Lord’: good teacher or one way of several are not options.”

Obviously, since I was at work when this aired, I have no idea what happened at this show, or what the specifics are were that were being discussed. So, Ms. Winfrey, I can’t exactly finish my wife’s letter to you.

If you were seriously questioning how God considers himself jealous, that one I can explain by describing any of his children (and we all are his children) following after a different religion, or a different god; as far as He’s concerned, that’s basically like cheating on Him (for what it’s worth, the entire book of Hosea covers this topic pretty well). If there were another way to come to Him, after all, why would He put His own Son through everything that He put Him through? I believe you’re familiar with the story.

The thing is, as far as Rachel could tell, you keep – kept? You’ll forgive me if I don’t follow your media empire, and thus don’t know where you stand at present (after all, this was in 1995) – your own beliefs personal, so as not to offend any of your viewers, which is perfectly understandable. But for the sake of your own soul, she just wanted to inform you of how to save it.

Anyway, were you to be made aware of this, Ms. Winfrey, now you know what this insignificant little fan of yours wanted to tell you. And if you have any reaction to this, I’m only sorry that she’s not around I know about it.

But I do know that she would like to see you again.

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I am Rachel's husband. Was. I'm still trying to deal with it. I probably always will be.

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