Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Required Reading

They like Jesus...

Winston: Hey Ray. Do you believe in God? Ray: Never met him. Winston: Yeah, well, I do. And I love Jesus's style, you know. Ghostbusters (1984)

...but not the church:

Christians are hard to tolerate. I don't know how Jesus does it. Bono

I hate when people do stuff like what I'm doing right now: "If you read one book this year, make it this one." (Actually reminds me of a great Steve Taylor quote from the advertising from I Predict: 1990: "If you buy one album this year, buy mine too.") I tend to ignore it on purpose... as if to say, "Obviously you are in throes of some kind of mania and need to be brought down a couple of notches."

Look, I'm not condoning my behavior - I've managed to miss plenty of very good books, movies, albums & games this way. (If it wasn't for the kind persistence of Matt, I'd have missed Yspahan with this kind of dumb-butt snobbery.)

So, when I tell you that every person in leadership in a Christian church ought to read Dan Kimball's new book, I don't want you to blow me off. Go pick this up & let it mess with your head & heart. Give it the chance to burrow under your defenses & get you thinking about what kind of impressions those of us who call ourselves Christ-followers leave with the way we "do church."

This may sound odd, but quite honestly, I don’t blame people in our emerging culture for what they think about us. If I weren’t a church leader or if I weren’t friends with Christians who really are following Jesus in a loving and balanced way, I would probably judge Christians and Christianity based on what I could see from the outside. And it isn’t a pretty picture.

Based on outside observations of Christians, there’s no way I would want to become one of them. I wouldn’t want to become an angry, judgmental, right-wing, finger-pointing person. I wouldn’t be saying that out of rebellion against God or the church; I would simply conclude that from observations of Christians and from not wanting to change into something I wouldn’t want to be like. Dan Kimball, They Like Jesus But Not The Church

No comments: