Why Christian?

Rachel Held-Evans writes of a conference she hosted in 2015 having invited ‘a dozen speakers’ to respond to the question:

“Why Christian? Why, with all the atrocities past and present committed in God’s name, amid all the divisions ripping apart the church, in spite of all their doubts and frustrations and fears about faith, are they still followers of Jesus?  What makes them continue to believe?” (P162, INSPIRED)

She unpacks some responses:

… “because having a body wasn’t always good news for me, but then I met Good News that had a body”

… “because God knows my pain, not in an abstract way, but in a real, bloody, enfleshed way.”

… “because the gospel is good news for gay people too.”

… “because I don’t always know if this story is true, but I choose to live my life as if it were.  I choose to live as if the things Jesus died for were worthy of God’s sacrifice and therefore worthy of mine.”

And I find myself wondering how I might answer the question,

— not having experienced a great measure of atrocity, but having witnessed the spiritual neglect of my children (of which I feel somewhat complicit)

— not caught up in the fury of church division, but poised on the edge of a culture war vortex, clinging for dear life onto my capacity to ‘live in the tension’.

Despite my doubts, frustrations and fears, why Christian?

… because the neglect and withdrawal I have witnessed, experienced personally, and been guilty of perpetuating isn’t only seen by God; but exposed, unearthed, and eclipsed by a love that keeps turning up.


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