In the final pages of American Jesus author Stephen Prothero wrote,
"Like America's Jesus himself, who was born among Protestants but now lives among Christians and non-Christians alike, the United States has developed from a Protestant country into a nation, secular by law and religious by preference, that is somehow both the most Christian and the most religiously diverse on earth." (pg. 302)
I think that's rather neat to consider though I wonder how many of those people including myself really follow Jesus' teachings. Are we mostly "cultural Christians" or do we take Jesus' words seriously? Or should we? Is it enough to have Jesus as our "buddy" without hearing what he has to say and doing it?
I finished that book a few days ago and read one from a British-born lady with an Afghani heritage. It was a library book that I found the same day I got American Jesus. Now I am reading a book I got for Christmas, Arab Voices by James Zogby. The subtitle is "what they are saying to us, and why it matters."
If I asked you what the Arab world is saying to us, how would you answer?
And do you think it matters to us? Should it? Or should we care little since that world is not our world, and is, in fact, thousands of miles away?
I'm also reading Girl Meets God by Lauren F. Winner. Subtitle says "on the path to a spiritual life," and I also found it at the library. Apparently she had a Reform Jewish father and a "lapsed Southern Baptist mother," but chose to become an Orthodox Jew. Until she had a dream about Jesus and knew "as certain as I have ever been about anything, that the dream was from God and the dream was about Jesus, about how He was real and true and sure." (pg. 8) That lead her to eventually accepting Jesus. Actually I'm not very far into this book so I'll have to keep reading about her spiritual journey. So far it's interesting because she sees Christianity through Jewish eyes and even explains how Jews read the Bible and celebrate holidays. I believe that I will enjoy "seeing" Christianity and Jesus through the lenses of one who grew up in the Jewish faith and also learning about Judaism in the process. I don't know any Jews that I can recall. Not a lot of religious diversity in my area.
Are you reading anything interesting these days? Feel free to share what has taken your interest lately. Also, I'd love to hear your thoughts about the Arab questions above if you care to make your voice heard in the comments.