For many years I’ve thought the world needs a few more people standing up for religion. Our age suffers from an enormous spiritual wimpiness. So many people go around with the vague sense, if they’re pressed, that there must be something out there. And that’s where they stop. Have you ever heard someone say, “I’m a spiritual person, but I don’t believe in Organized Religion.” Well, the alternative to organized religion usually is disorganized religion: facing a set of questions that must certainly be acknowledged as vital, and then treating them like that lower drawer in the kitchen cabinet, where you shove things you don’t have a use for but haven’t decided to throw away.
If this is you, I have something to say to you: YOU’RE GOING TO HELL!!! Okay, just kidding. How should I know where you’re going? You’ve got to figure that out, to make something out of this odd set of accidents that is Your Life. If you want specific advice from me, I’ll be happy to recommend a church I know that does things pretty well. And, from time to time, I’ll have more to say about that church, and its teachings, and its failings, and its miraculous persistence. But I’m really interested in broader questions.
People who think religion is nonsense need to start thinking clearly about what religion really is. People who have some vague sense that there is a spiritual world of some kind need to sort out specifically what that implies for their own personal lives. People who are practicing Christians (myself included) need to get more serious about what it actually means to be a Christian.
What gives me the right to start handing out advice to those folks? Well, I’ve spent some time in each of those groups. Not that this is going to be my autobiography, which would be as dreadful to read as it would be to write. This blog is hopefully a conversation starter. You get to choose the participants in your particular conversation.
So let’s get started.