I go to the local High School for a lunch-time bible club.  The club is jointly put on by three of us youth minister guys, one from youth for Christ, one from a four-square church in Kailua, and me, and sometimes our intern Kenji.  Today was the last club if the year and the three of us each took about ten minutes to share with these teens.

I shared about how ridiculous and absurd Jesus’ birth is and how crazy it is that this is how God chose to enter out world and save it.  The my friend Dan, the YFC guy gets up and shares a couple stories.  I love Dan and feel like he has such a heart for lost teens and wants to do anything to reach them.  But one of my favorite things about Dan is his honesty.  He shares real struggles he has that most Christians don’t want to share for fear of looking like a bad Christian heathen or something.

Well, toward the end of his time Dan tells the kids, “I have a confession to make to you guys.  I can no longer call myself a Christian,”.  At this point everyone, myself included, stops dead in their tracks as we wait for Dan to go on.  And he did.  He went on to explain that he still believes everything that a Christian believes and that he is still trying to live the life Christ calls him to in scripture.

The reason, Dan said, that he doesn’t feel comfortable calling himself a Christian anymore is because he feels like his life doesn’t reflect  what Christ calls us to.  He said, “I don’t take care of the poor, naked and hungry, I don’t spend time with widows or prisoners.  I don’t feel like I love my neighbor as myself, and until I feel like I do that, I don’t feel like I can call myself a Christian,”

Dan doesn’t question his salvation at all, he knows he is saved by grace and faith in Christ.  But Dan seriously questions what we allow to pass for Christianity.  The modern, western  Christian Church is probably so far from the things that Christ called us to, that he would have trouble recognizing us as his followers.  So Dan is taking a step, and he is starting with himself.  We had lunch afterward and he shared more of his heart on it, but he doesn’t doubt who he is in Christ or is even discrediting Christianity.  He infact is elevating Christianity by reminding himself and the rest of us the high calling we have accepted.

Christ’s way changes lives. He calls us to love God with everything we are and have, and to love our neighbors like we would want to be loved.  Those are two high callings.  Jesus told his disciples that they will be known by their love.  If you are a Christian and are reading this, you should be seriously examining your life right now, because truthfully, I don’t measure up.  I don’t need to measure up because Christi does that for me but honestly, I don’t think people know me by my love.  But I want to change that.  I have seen a God who is all about mercy, love, peace, and kindness and I love that.  I am making steps so that my life better reflects he who took the fall for me, and who changed the world with Love.

Dan closed with this Mother Teresa quote that has been a bit of a mantra to me these last few weeks, “We can do no great things; only small things with great love”. I hope to.