I attempt every day to break the misconceptions that the church has in regards to geek culture. There have been many articles written about this topic, promoting the need for a Christian resource in the culture. There are several groups out there that try and combat this stereotype as well.
Even while we have a lot of groups out there offering a voice to the culture, we still deal with the false stereotypes of what a Christian geek is and is not. Here are five of the most common:
1. Geeks are antisocial and out of touch with reality.
I’m sure many of you have heard this before, and modern media only paints a blurrier picture of what a geek is: post nasal drip, pocket protector, an affinity for cheese… We’ve heard it all! However, when you look at the big picture of what geek culture really is, you’ll see that there are more social, outgoing, and downright fun people to be found. Many geeks spend time in front of a video camera or webcam, sharing the things they love.
2. Geeks practice sorcery or witchcraft when they participate in LARPing events or play Magic the Gathering card games.
Such a platform for the church to speak out against Christians who enjoy these types of things! I cannot count on both hands how many videos or sermons have been devoted to this very thing–claiming that the participant is worshiping a demon or practicing magick. Granted, there are those in the culture who take things too far, but that can be said about any culture, even sports. Give us some credit, church! Most Christians know when their passions cross the line and aren’t afraid to say “we don’t want part in that.”
3. Gaming geeks are losers who live in their parent’s basement and gorge themselves on food and porn while gaming.
I get fed up when I hear this stereotype! Granted, my mancave is technically in my “basement,” but guess what? I have a full-time job, support a family of four, and work hard to pay for all the things I enjoy. Many Christian geeks are the exact same way, and are active in their church, and even on staff in some instances. Regarding sin, we share the same convictions as the next Christian.
4. Geeks are just insecure and don’t know how to cope with other people.
I have met more insecure people outside of geek culture than in it. A geek doesn’t care what you think of them or their hobby. They just want to be around the stuff they love. In fact, there is a certain beauty about someone who can “make a fool of themselves” in front of people and not care what others think about them. Geeks are not only smart and outgoing, but they are also unashamed of the things they are passionate about.
5. A geek can’t be a geek and a Christian at the same time.
Is this the message the church wants to send? How many times at church have you heard the preacher say something about the local sports team and everyone smirks and laughs? It’s completely acceptable for someone to participate in fandom of that sort and be a devout Christian, but it’s not OK for geeks to be devout Christians and participate in theirs? Get outta here! We are just as passionate about God as we are about our hobbies, and when you see us putting in work at a mission or at church, maybe you should come over and give a hearty thanks, because geeks rule!