And they said being an atheist has no perks…
I recently received an offer from a Christian couple (husband and wife) in their 30s who would like me to spend the summer with them:
We would like you to consider, at no cost to you, spending the summer with us. There are no strings attached (with the exception of the open mind you agreed to in you auction) and, should you decide, you may leave at any time. If you have stayed, at the end of the summer, we will give you $10,000.
Maybe that sounds like a scam. But they actually seem sincere about this:
As far as what you would do… We just want you to get to know our family and what our lives are really like. Spend time with us, fellowship with us, see us in many different situations. For example, since moving here 3 years ago, we have had a 4th of July party for the church, neighborhood and work. So far, we have had great attendence (~70). It is important to us to do that because it brings together our friends from church and the neighborhood, including: Muslims, Jews, agnostics, other Christian denominations, other cultures and ideals. People have seemed to really enjoy themselves. We want you to experience our lives through things such as that. Your schedule is your own; this is a three month opportunity to find Truth.
We are open to any questions or comments that you have. We don’t claim to have all the answers, either. We do think that we could shed some light on several of the points you brought up in your book. Think of it as an “immersion” experience. One of the things that struck us when reading your book, is that it seems as if you got small glimpses (think speed-dating) of many different things, mostly of the “religion” of Christianity. We want you to see people with a real relationship with Jesus Christ (think exclusively dating). Our church is small, but the people there are sincere, a rare quality inside or outside the religous world. Their flaws, for that matter, our flaws, will surely be evident to you, but I believe that you will be able to see true Christianity.
We are not planning on telling people why you are here, so you can see them as they really are. You, of course, can tell them if you wish.
I don’t know if this is possible from my end (*so* close to finishing grad school and my summer class would be my last one), so it could all be moot. I suppose things could always be rearranged, though…
In any case, we’ve exchanged a few emails and they seem to be really interested in this.
I’m not sure if it would accomplish anything. I have spent far more time with True ChristiansTM than I have inside a church — before and after the writing of the book. And that hasn’t changed my atheism in the least. I don’t think that being with a different group of True ChristiansTM will change that.
Though, this experiment does sound like something I’d do…
I’m not ready to say yes anytime soon. (Lots of things would have to be worked out.)
What do you think?