Following is the foreword pulled from my book, “postChristian: What’s left? Can we fix it? Do we care?“, being published by Jericho Books/Hachette August 12, 2014.
anyway. The Christian religion is not what it should
be, what it claims to be. And whether you’re a religious insider,
a battered-and-bruised outcast, or a curious bystander,
that should bother you. It bothers me.
But for every wound I expose, for every wrong I call out
from the darkness into light, it’s my hope that you’ll find an
equal measure of hope, love, and inspiration in the pages to
come. There will be times when you want to set this book
down for a while, or even toss it against the wall. That’s fine;
just don’t walk away.
See, that’s the problem. We find it all too easy to walk
away when things get screwed up, when they let us down,
when the divisions seem unbridgeable. But we owe it to one
another to stick it out, to see more than one side to the story,to try, as hard as it may be, to see through someone else’s eyes.
I’m not trying to get you to go back to church. If you’re
already in church, I’m not trying to get you to stay, any more
than I’m trying to get you to leave. I don’t care if you call
yourself a Christian or not, if you’ve been baptized, offered
the Sinner’s Prayer, or proclaimed before a group of fellow
believers that you’ve accepted Jesus into your heart.
I care more about the lives we’re choosing to live, as individuals,
as members of society, as churchgoers, skeptics,
seekers, doubters, than I do about what you claim to believe
or the institutions or groups with which you choose to identify.
The labels just don’t matter.
For me, trying to model my life, my words, my ideas after
a man I believe walked the earth about two thousand years
ago is a personal choice. It’s one of many, many choices. I
don’t need you to think like me, to believe the things I believe,
for us to more closely resemble what I think we’ve been
created to be. So call yourself a Christian or not, go to church
or don’t. But come to this book with open eyes, an open
mind, and a willing heart.
I trust, as I hope you trust, that the rest will take care of itself.