Thursday, July 24, 2008
Often, after our evening service, we migrate to a local pub. Usually there are about 10 of us and we observe our ritual of buying a drink, debating what flavour of crisps we should have and hoping that our 'usual' long table is free (we are C of E so we like a bit of ritual). Not long ago, I was in this same pub with two friends who are both Vicars and we struck up a conversation with the manager while ordering our food. The look of horror when she discovered what we did will stay with me for some time and it was quickly followed by the adamant statement that she's not 'religious'. "Nor am I" I replied. We learnt that she is getting married in a few weeks and by the end of the night she had, I hope, warmed to the Christian aliens in her midst.
This week I saw her again. She said enthusiastically that she had been telling everyone about the three vicars in her pub. I had brought with me a copy of the Marriage Book to give her because she had had no marriage preparation. She received this with enthusiasm. I have no idea if she will ever engage with Jesus but I hope in some way she has already started to (if Col 2:8-9 be true) and that if we spent a little more time in pubs speaking of Jesus, rather than in a church buildings being religious, we might see more of the work of grace in these days.
Reggie McNeal really impacted me with his thoughts along this line (worth 44 minutes of your time and the last 15 is profound) and I am trying to live out some of the things that landed on my heart.
Jesus seemed to like this as a plan to get among things more and this post agrees with me too.
Dan Kimball has some similarly interesting perspectives in his new DVD 'They like Jesus but they don't like the Church'