"I’m going to confess something here which may send you flying to the bookstore for a return on your purchase. I hope not, but I can’t do anything but speak as candidly as possible through these pages.
Sometimes I envy, seriously envy, those who do not have a million-and-one memorized Bible verses ricocheting throughout their head. A million-and-one, “Ooo! Ooo! Pick me! Pick me!” answers--good answers, even, which all too often suffocate a much needed first-response to pain, grief, confusion, and worry. (See, even as I typed the "w"-word at least three bible verses popped into my mind and almost compelled me to write a “But Christians aren’t supposed to worry,” disclaimer. And I'm pretty sure some of you did the same thing.)
Sigh. Sometimes it’s so wearying being me. Being you?
Said confession is almost cringe-worthy, isn’t it? Especially coming from the author of the book. But I hope you'll hear me on this; the heart behind such thinking is simply this: sometimes—many times, I long to be given permission to exhale.
To feel my pain.
To feel my confusion.
To feel—dare I say it—my unbelief.
And then permission to discover the transforming power and sensitivity of those 1,000,001 life-giving, life-restoring, commands, principals, directives, and truth.
Here’s what I think and know to be true in the world in which we live, and move, and have our day-to-day being: What the world needs and what the believing church is desperately crying out for is a Christian woman who bleeds—one who would submit her application into The Worst Kind of Christian arena as she certainly doesn’t have everything figured out and wrapped up.
See, I think that woman is the one you and I would most want to share a room with over a relaxed weekend retreat. She’s the one we’d stay up with into the wee hours of the morning; baring our soul over the course of confessions, prayer, laughter and, of course, tears. I believe it is that woman you want sitting alongside you on a comfortable sofa while intermittently sipping chai tea and spitting out anger and grief regarding a difficult family relationship.
I believe it is that woman you (and I) would trust to draw near when we’ve all but convinced ourselves that we too, without a doubt, are The Worst Kind of Christian.
The Worst Kind of Christian…
who has come to the end of herself,
for whom God seems to be actively working against, (yes, I said it),
and whose prayers, while spoken, are rarely felt or believed heard.
The Worst Kind of Christian…
who has experienced the humiliating unraveling of finances, job security, family, dreams, and health (perhaps all at the same time),
for whom God seems aloof, if not removed,
and whose prayers, while whispered, are rarely felt or believed heard.
The Worst Kind of Christian who violently grasps and holds to faith—believing there is a God who sees—even if it seems He’s chosen to close those metaphorical eyes; choosing to believe—despite everything emotions and rationality propose and submit— that He will never abandon her, if for no other reason than its an impossibility given His character (2 Timothy 2:13)...see, there goes that "Ooo!" "Ooo!" thing again.
The Worst Kind of Christian following hard after Jesus in the best kind of honest way.
Most certainly me!
Perhaps you too?"