“Bringing Jesus to the Super Bowl” (My column in USA Today)

If you think the Super Bowl is just a big football game featuring large, sweaty men repeatedly colliding with one another, consider this: last year’s game drew 111.3 million viewers, making it the most watched event in U.S. television history—for the third year in a row. According to Nielsen, the audience is getting more diverse: Hispanic and African-American viewership is increasing, and, in 2012, an astounding 46% of the audience was women.

More than a game, the Super Bowl has become America’s largest cultural stage.

And it is, of course, for this reason that each year the titans of industry mobilize their resources trying to devise clever and visually appealing messages promoting their products in compact 30-second blasts. Indeed, it is the only time I can think of when people make a point of watching the commercials just to see what they are about.

If, however, the packaging of the products changes from year to year, the products themselves do not. They’re mostly about beer, automobiles and potato chips. As a consequence, the commercials are often inane. And that got me thinking:

If I had thirty seconds to say anything I wanted to an audience numbering more than 100 million, what would I say?

You can continue reading here.

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