Thursday, September 10, 2009

Christianish

I've spent the last year or so rather disgruntled with The Church. Not MY church, per se, but The Church in general. Her people. Myself. Or, more clearly stated, I'm tired. Tired of the front. Tired of my flashes of rage and moments of pure selfishness. Tired of being surrounded by people that "have it all together." Tired of not being able to confess my sins one to another for fear of what that another will think. Tired of hoping someone else will fail so I won't be alone in my failure. Tired of being caught by my agnostic (at best) neighbor doing anything he perceives as unChristian. Tired of the altercation that inevitably follows. I'm tired of being a hypocrite. And you know that is what my neighbor thinks I am. Because Christians, in general, have a bad name. Somehow we've given the world the misconception that we are perfect. Or that we at least think we are. Or think that they think we are. And they can't wait to prove that we aren't perfect, because if they can prove that wrong, the rest of what we profess is a lie. (Or so I've come to understand the "dark side" believes whether that is what we believe or not.)

We put on a front. We smile and act nice. Some of us even are nice. We want to win over our crotchety neighbors that love to incite us to anger and then use that anger as proof that they would never want to join OUR club. But who wants to join up with a bunch of people who won't admit that life is sometimes ugly?

Anyway, when I read the description for Christianish; What if We're Not Really Following Jesus At All? I had to see if Mark Steele had any wisdom for me and my dilemma.

Back Cover Copy:

Rediscover what it means to live like Christ and ditch the ish.

Somewhere between cold faith and hot pursuit lies lukewarm spirituality. And in the media between the wide path and the narrow road we find the middle ground of the spiritual walk. It’s something not quite Christian. More like…Christianish.

Christianish tells the story of one man’s journey to move from the in-between to a life centered on Christ. To move forward, author Mark Steele goes back to the beginning, to examine Christ’s life and words. Through stories and insights that are sometimes profound, often hilarious, and always honest, Mark delivers a compelling look at what our faith is all about.

(I'm back) And that copy doesn't even do the book justice. I rather expected dry reading and the first page (of the prologue, no less) left me gasping for air. This guy is hilarious. He opens the chapters with vignettes from his life that, gracious, who can tell stories like that? And then whamo! Smacks you upside the head with a figurative two by four of truth. Seriously, there are so many underlined passages in my book, I may as well just re-read the whole thing.

One of my favorites?: "...we cannot truly exemplify godliness until we shut up." [! *] (pg 103, top paragraph)

Oh, but what stemmed my rambling opening came from page 45, top paragraph. Oh, it's gooooood.

Indeed.

(that was your teaser)

Every now and then I come across a book I would like to go through with people. This is one. Anyone wanna?

4 comments:

S said...

YES!! I am in. Sounds challenging--in a good way!

mommy4life said...

Me too! Me too!

Sr, Citizen said...

Hit me right between the eyes, yes, you did. I surely do need a mind make over. Will read as soon as the Library gets in a loaner (Sr. to tight to squeeeek)

Happy Birthday to first Born ! 9 or 10?? I'm having a Sr. Moment. Mostly lasts all day. Where did I leave my coffee cup? Sr.

My mission is to ~ said...

Great teaser. Now I HAVE to read the book. Thanks for the recommendation!