“You do not belong here. But shame on you for not staying.”

In addition to a lot of responses on my Facebook page (which I hope you’ll friend and follow), here’s a brief sampling of what has come in about a recent critical article and my response to it:

I want to sincerely thank you. My apologies, but I know nothing of you except from reading your blog posted February 21, 2014. I happen to agree with you on about every single issue you detailed, but that is not the point of my note. It may sounds a bit melodramatic, but I am reminded of the guy facing down the tank in Tiananmen Square. I think given a choice, I might choose a tank over the tsunami of evangelical wrath. You provide a glimmer of hope.
I am not sure where the future of my personal faith lies. I am convinced that individuals like you will bring more people to approach the Bible and truly understanding the teachings of Jesus. Whether those souls will be bound for heaven is not for me to say, but I believe they will make the world a better place for our children.
Thank you again for your reason, compassion and courage.


wanted to share with you a letter that I am sending to Father Kevin Miller regarding his recent CT article. I am thankful for you and for what you do.
Dear Father Miller,
I was wondering if I could share a little bit of my story with you? I want to share how God has used Don Miller, Rob Bell, and Brian McLaren in my story. They don’t know me, but their books, their stories, were a blessing to me.
When I read your recent article in Christianity Today, I felt like a line was being drawn in the sand, and I heard: “You do not belong here. But shame on you for not staying.” However, when I read Blue Like Jazz, Velvet Elvis, Love Wins, A Generous Orthodoxy, and A New Kind of Christianity, I felt hopeful that there was room for me at Christianity’s table. Miller, Bell, and McLaren helped me at a time when I wondered whether a real faith was even possible for me. They helped me know that I wasn’t alone in my questions. Maybe my questions were actually good. There is Life in, beyond, and through these questions. Miller, Bell, and McLaren made space for me. These authors pointed toward More.
Christianity is More, so much bigger, than the evangelical Christianity that I grew up with. I loved that evangelical Christianity. I have a feeling that they did too, and that is why they spoke into that arena. Why they continue to speak.
I am thankful that they do.
If Miller, Bell, and McLaren had quietly slipped out the back door without letting others know about what they have seen, I might have been left with an empty faith. A faith stunted by seemingly impossible beliefs. I might still be stuck in the questions, unable to move forward. Maybe I would not have heard that there was More. Maybe I would not have experienced the More-ness and reality of God myself.
My life, my soul, and my faith are being transformed. God is on the move in my life, and it is beautiful. Each of those writers were a part of that process.
Maybe, as your article suggests, we no longer belong in evangelical Christianity. But it is evangelical Christianity’s loss to push writers, thinkers, and poets like Miller, Bell, and McLaren out of the fold. Christianity should be and is a spacious place. There is room for the story that God is writing with your life. There is room for the story that God is writing with my life. Even though our stories might look vastly different.
“God travels wonderful paths with human beings; God does not arrange matters to suit our opinions and views, does not follow the path that humans would like to prescribe for God. God’s path is free and original beyond all our ability to understand or to prove.”
– Dietrich Bonhoeffer
Maybe, instead of pointing fingers at one another, we can make space for one another’s stories and marvel at the grace that God shows to each one of us.
With Love and Hope,