Finding faith in our secular, postmodern world can be difficult. Especially when it appears that the two are mutually exclusive. That's what Dave Schmelzer thought when he was an atheist. However, he did come to faith and now leads a large church in Boston, MA. In the tradition of C.S. Lewis's "Mere Christianity", "Not the Religious Type" explores the reality of faith in a postmodern world, and suggests a new, unexpected way of seeing the world and our place in it.
As an atheist, Dave Schmelzer never thought of himself as the religious typeand he still doesn't, even though he now believes in God and leads a large Boston church in the shadow of some of the nation's most impressive universities. Religion is usually about rules and codes, about being good, about what will get you embraced and what will get you shunned. But God, according to Dave, is all about how you can become a closer friend with him, with others, and with yourself.
In the tradition of C. S. Lewis's Mere Christianity and G. K. Chesterton's Orthodoxy comes this illuminating collection of thoughts on faith in a postmodern world. Not the Religious Type bridges the gap between the two communities in which many of us livethe secular and the religiousand suggests a new, unexpected way of seeing the world and our place in it.
Whether we're the religious type or not, there's a certain part of each of us that invariably wonders if it's trueif there's a God we can connect with who is alive and active, with the kind of perspective on our lives and futures that we could never have on our own.
As Dave engagingly explores these most important questions, he invites his readers into a new and warmer spring, a way of thinking that will help both secularists who never imagined they would become people of faith and also people of faith who perhaps haven't experienced all from God that they've hoped.
The title of this book is misleading since it characterizes the author, pastor of a Boston-area Pentecostal church, as an ex-atheist. But as Schmelzer recounts in the book, his atheism was a teen phase, and adolescent explorations are generally not cited on one's intellectual résumé. The title also sets the reader up to expect some apologetic rejoinder to trendy bestselling polemical atheists. This book, however, is much broader (and better) than that, and almost antipolemical. Schmelzer has a disarmingly low-key way with words, a refreshing change from the fighting terms so often employed in battles over religious truth . His self-deprecating tone is persuasive even while he makes bold statements about the power of faith. He asserts, for example, that prayer can bring about physical healing, a statement he backs with evidence from his own family and a few other instances. Yet he's honest enough to admit he has no answer to the question of why God permits suffering. Schmelzer's mild-mannered theological humility is winning. (July) Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.