Monday, May 13, 2013

Christianish

Years ago I read what I still deem as the funniest book I have ever read, Flashbang by Mark Steele. The subtitle and the subject matter was about how to get over yourself. I've read it a few times in the past several years, partly because of its humor but mostly because of my constant need for a reminder to get over myself.

I say all that so you know that when I see a book by Mark Steele, I grab it...immediately. Such was the case when I saw Christianish. I saw the author and knew this book would get the rare move up to the top of the stack.
The book, in a nutshell, asks Christians to consider that perhaps we are the problem. Perhaps we've been getting it wrong all along.

Mark delivers his usual style of great story-telling, all the while leaving the reader wondering how so many terrifically crazy things can happen to one family in a lifetime. But what he brings in this book is a big can of take-a-good-look-at-your-life-and-stop-making-excuses. For those who have read Mark's first couple of books, expect this one to hit a bit harder. I wasn't expecting it, but it was all stuff that I (and we) need to hear.

Allow me to whet your whistle with a few quotes...

On witnessing...

It is our mandate as true Christians to help all men and women discover the deep reality of who Jesus is. Absorb this. It is not only our responsibility to pass on facts. It is our responsibility to help those facts become immersed into lifestyle.

On grace and sin...
We must refuse to waste grace as a coupon to remain stuck in our sinful cycles. We should instead invite Christ to use His grace as a microscope so that we can seek true healing from our obvious sins, and then daily dig deeper into the more subtle core issues that continue to kill us. We must thank God daily, not merely in our prayers, but in our eradication of the things we may like, but He hates.

On our significance...
Funny. I always thought my attempts at godliness wouldn’t make all that much difference to the world. In light of the mammoth sunshine of Christ, I was at best a tiny blip of a moon. Miniature and reflective. Barely a dust mite in light of that massive star. Unfortunately that tiny moon is capable of blocking out the light of the sun almost entirely. It’s called an eclipse, and it is what happens when the vastly smaller moon is hovering too close to the observer and in front of the sunlight. Yes, most nights we moons reflect the light, claiming its grandeur as our own—but occasionally, through a sudden collision of random happenstance, we make the sun seem to completely disappear.
Trust me when I say that this is one that should be read, applied, read over with a group and applied once more.

No comments: