These are the words of Brisbane's Wavell Heights mum of three, Felicity Moore quoted in a recent Sydney Morning Herald article titled ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ which attempts to explain the excitement women are finding in this new paradigm of what was once referred to as romantic ‘penny dreadful’ genre, but with much more clarity from the bedroom. (www.news.com.au)
Described as a "publishing phenomenon" that has taken the world by storm, much the same way the Harry Potter series did, Queensland booksellers are reporting an avalanche in sales across the state and BigW alone an increase by 144%. Moreover the author of the trilogy, British author E.L. James is a 40-something mother of teenagers.
Felicity Moore pointed out that motherhood is great but it comes with a staggering level of tedium: Get up, get the kids breakfast, pack lunches, wrangle children into school uniforms, drop kids at school, home to do housework or off to work. The school pick-up, dinner, stories, bed and bring on wine o'clock! We do this day in, day out. Forever, but that this is “escapism” pure and simple.
Over the years, I’ve written extensively about the wonderful nature of trusting sex within marriage in Christian teaching. More recently, people like Mars Hill US preacher Mark Drsicoll and others have been far more forthright on such matters. (au.christiantoday.com)
But what caught my eye in this Sydney Morning Herald article was the paragraph stated at the beginning of this article: "Then along comes super-rich Christian Grey. He could sweep us off our feet and solve all our problems. He's rich - no more mortgage woes. He's handsome, he's witty, clever and, at times, romantic. He's a knight in sexy armour. The complete package."
It is the phrase “super-rich Christian Grey” that caught my attention. Quite apart from the context of the trilogy, (and of course the mandatory theological criticism), it is this phrase that has a greater input in today’s western society than one might imagine.
So who might be classified in such a category as “super-rich Christian Grey? There appears to be a multitude of such men available today.
Christian Grey's are all around us
Divorce has left many a man lonely, men in their late fifties and early sixties, someone who has devoted his energies to his former wife and their children, and now finds himself free of financial restitution and with capital and money to burn.
Widowers too are in a similar situation, men who are alone and in want of comfort and love, men who need ‘true and righteous’ companionship and who are seeking another partner, but realise life will never be the same as it was.
A third group of men in this age bracket, albeit, men who have never been married, single men, even perhaps men who had a relationship some years ago, got burned and really never sought out such long term relationship situations which carries with it so much baggage.
Clearly, these are the very categories which explain who are the “super-rich Christian Grey”. Moreover the term ‘super-rich’ might simply refer to their superannuation nest egg, or their high salaries. They could be anything from white collar bankers or corporate men or the new super rich mine worker, a businessman, maybe a recent retiree.
The right woman
These “Christian Grey” heterosexuals all have one thing in common – given the right circumstances within the proper relationship, they are sexual giants waiting for the right woman to unleash the true man within them. The literature is abundantly clear, this is precisely what this new genre has revealed.
These are men of upstanding character, men of good-will and bounty, not men comfortable with a one night stand, but men whose honest and true desire is to share all that he has with a woman he can love and a woman who will truly love him for who he is.
This is “Christian Grey”. The literature reveals he is sexy as! He’s also of sound mind, knows what is right and wrong, and has enough good sense to detect that which is on the path to personal heartache, financial ruin and twilight destruction.
Moreover, from the outside he is pretty plain, flat and dull. Therein lies this remarkable mystery.
This is the older man the Apostle Paul spoke equally of in 1 Corinthians 7 who can remain unmarried to serve the Lord unless the right woman comes along who can support his spiritual hunger to serve Christ, as his first priority.
Little wonder these women are yearning for such a ‘Christian Grey’.
Dr Mark Tronson is a Baptist minister (retired) who served as the Australian cricket team chaplain for 17 years (2000 ret) and established Life After Cricket in 2001. He was recognised by the Olympic Ministry Medal in 2009 presented by Carl Lewis Olympian of the Century. He has written 24 books, and enjoys writing. He is married to Delma, with four adult children and grand-children.
Mark Tronson's archive of articles can be viewed at www.pressserviceinternational.org/mark-tronson.html