A reader writes: So busy battling – no spirituality!

A reader writes:

Hello Brian,
I went to church that was studying your new book and it seems there are some who are taking the guts out of Christianity and I just wanted to know where you stand. They seem to think that the spiritual miracle that happened when Jesus died on the cross was merely a political statement and not for our wrongness. The pastor argued that they had’t done enough wrong for someone to die. Well I say it shows what love is and forgiveness is. It is like rear ending someone and that someone getting out of the car and gives us money to fix our car while driving away in their just crushed car. Small accident not worthy of any consideration but the impact is huge with Jesus response. The pastor also denies that Jesus is divine. I mean it is called Christianity for a reason.
The left has gone so for left and the right has gone so far right. I don’t recognize Christianity anymore. They are so engaged with battling each other spirituality goes by the way side. The little people like me have no where to find shelter because of all the verbal shooting. If you respond speak in little words. I am uneducated.

Thanks for writing. It really can be frustrating … it feels like people are arguing about everything, and sometimes we all just wish we could “find shelter” as you say. You asked me to be simple, so I want to give you a simple picture.

Imagine a field. At one end of the field is a tree, and at the bottom of the tree, a dog is looking up and barking. You think, “There must be something up that tree … maybe a raccoon, a squirrel, a cat.”

Then you look to the other end of the field. There’s another tree with another dog looking up and barking. What would your reaction be?

Would you say that one of the dogs is barking up the wrong tree?

Or could it be possible that there’s something interesting up in both trees?

My sense is that most people are trying to defend something that is precious to them “up in their tree.” They make a mistake when they attack other people who have found something precious in another tree.

At some point, we have to learn to rediscover the treasure at the heart of the Christian faith. One of my books where I try to do this in very simple terms is called The Secret Message of Jesus. I think you would enjoy it.

Thank you for expressing this frustration. I feel it too. Let’s keep trying to love everybody and realize they are after something that’s precious to them. But let’s be sure to keep the main thing the main thing, which, according to Jesus and Paul and John … is love. That’s simple. That’s deep. That’s what matters most.