A few years ago, my brother was living with us for a while. I cannot begin to describe in a few lines what his life had been like, but suffice it to say that while here, he was trying to kick a heroine habit.
One night, my brother and I were out in the back yard talking about life. He had many amazing things to talk about. And some very sad things as well. We talked about a lot, including thoughts on God. My brother was a strong agnostic. He sensed that there must be something out there, but the God of the Bible (as he interpreted him, anyway) was not appealing to him at all.
During the course of our conversation, I invited him to attend church with me the next day. He said that he had not been in a church in over 20 years, but that he would come.
After the service was over, we talked about it. I had hoped that the preachers words might have struck a cord with him. But it was a short conversation, and it went something like this...
Me: What did you think of the service this morning?
Him: I thought it was lame.
Me: Oh. How about Mexican for lunch?
Him: Sure, I like Mexican.
Lame! I couldn't believe it, and wasn't sure how to respond. But now, looking back, I wonder if he was right. The sermon hit me because the preacher said all the things I already knew and agreed with. Nothing to challenge me and apparently nothing to challenge my brother with either.
I guess I have become a little more critical lately. Not of God, just of what we do as a church. (See previous post if you have a strong stomach.)
My brother is gone now. Took his life when he couldn't muster the strength on his own to kick the habit. And he was dead set against letting God or any other higher power do it for him. I miss him, and I wish I had the chance to tell him that he was right.
I don't want to be a lame Christian. Not anymore.