This book really began to challenge me in the ways I looked at my faith and at Christianity. Well, it had actually started when I began attending a Vineyard church in town, but the more I read the book, the more interested I became in investigating the “emerging church” movement and the postmodern mind. The subtitle of the book, “Nonreligious Thoughts on Christian Spirituality” is very accurate, and I love it for that fact. The more I’ve thought about my upbringing in church, and where my “head was,” the more I realized how “religious” I was. This book helped me to continue to break down those walls and preconceptions about others that were errected over the years of church-life.

One of the “light bulb” moments I had while reading this book relates to the postmodern mind. In postmodernism, [virtually] all authority is rejected; no one stands in a position of authority on truth or whether something is right or wrong. I think I realized part of the reason why this is believed today, especially in the younger crowd, when I read this section of the book:

The whole idea of everyone wanting to be somebody new was an important insight in terms of liking God. God was selling something I wanted. Still, God was in the same boat as the guy selling knives and Juliet promising to make Romeo new. Everybody exaggerates when they are selling something. Everybody says their product works like magic” (Miller, 2003, p. 29).

Those under 30 especially have been raised on television, and the marketing of products on TV. We know marketers stretch the truth a little, and at times, a lot. If a kid is raised on watching this, why wouldn’t he or she eventually begin to reject every marketing ploy as suspect. And let’s face it, some of evangelism today is marketing. Which is why I like some of the aspects of the emerging church so much, and why I like the “seeker-friendly” church I go to now. There is very little of the “religious” aspects I was raised on, and much more focus on hospitality, community, and service. If we want people to understand the saving power of Jesus, the best approach is by modeling Jesus’ life on earth today. Not by being “religious.”