“The problem with faith ... is it kind of screws up your priorities. Your priorities shouldn’t be about saving your own (butt), which is the focus of Christianity.” So says Bill (Religulous) Maher in a recent edition of Newsweek magazine. Is he right?Tony Rossi has a good article which looks at some examples of Christians living their faith and providing a good example for those around them.
However, I felt a certain sympathy for Bill Maher who obviously has not been privileged to run into a Christian truly living to the best of their abilities in a Christ-like fashion. It made me think of the quote with which I titled this post.
That in turn made me remember an encounter by Sandra Bullock when meeting the family who lived the original story told in her movie The Blind Side.
Sandra's perceptions of Christians changed with meeting Leigh Anne Tuohy, the woman she portrays in The Blind Side. Leigh Anne showed Sandra the reality of Jesus Christ by simply being herself and being real. Until meeting Leah Anne, Sandra was comfortable in her definition of Christians.We don't know who is watching when we are going about everyday life. It doesn't need to be something big, although many of the most inspiring examples are big steps of faith that have a big effect.
Bullock says she now has "faith in those who say they represent a faith." Through getting to know Leigh Anne, Sandra saw the authenticity of religious faith. "She was so open and honest and forthright," Bullock shares. "And I said, wow, I finally met someone who practices but doesn't preach."
In each case, however, we notice that it is because the Christians in question were trying their best to follow Jesus' example, not trying to impress someone else. The benefits they appreciated most were those that they themselves felt from their sacrifices. It was that faithfulness that God used to do wonderful works that stood out to others. Which gives us food for thought ... how faithful are we, no matter who is watching. After all, God sees it all. What am I giving Him to work with?
I see that The Anchoress also was meditating on Rossi's piece, in a similar but different way ... as fits right in with her theme of the paradoxes of Christianity.