When I was a senior in college at Belmont University in 1999, I had the privilege of meeting the senior pastor of Brentwood Baptist Church, Mike Glenn. Bro. Mike had taken an interest in our campus ministries and was spending a good bit of time with our students. He talked to us like we were adults (which we were), gave us good advice that pointed us first to Christ, and was simply a lot of fun to be around.
Right before graduation, I had a brief opportunity to talk with Bro. Mike about what was coming next for myself and for my husband (yep, we got married when we were wee babies). We knew that Chris was going to attend Southern Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky, but I wasn’t sure what I would be doing. You see, after four years pursuing a teaching certificate, I decided that teaching wasn’t really for me – a decision that I have never regretted. But what that left me with was a degree in English and a little experience working in a campus office.
And we all know that English degrees lead to Fortune 500 careers, right? (*Insert sarcasm here.)
Bro. Mike gave me two pieces of advice:
1) When you move to Louisville, you have to go to Hawley-Cooke bookstore. (Check. I’m happy to say that I went many times before it was turned into a Halloween Express this year. Most.Depressing.Thing.Ever.)
2) If you want to write, you can write “Christian” books, or you can be an author who is a Christian. The world needs more of the second group. Think about it.
Let me tell you – it may have taken 13 years, but I am thinking about it (slow learner). Now, publishing friends, don’t get all freaked out here – I know that I am not good enough to become a best-selling author. I am a really good editor, but a fair writer. Those traits make for decent magazine articles and blog posts, but do not make for the NYT bestsellers list.
What I am thinking about is this: As Christians, we have learned to compartmentalize life. We go to church on Sundays and Wednesdays, and we do our “real lives” on the other days. We take lots of Bible studies, listen to Christian radio, and wear church t-shirts (my closet is full, thank you student minister!).
But what happens when we are not at church? Are we living our Christian faith in our homes, at our jobs, on the playground, or at school? Do we seek justice, love mercy, and walk humbly with God (Micah 6:8) in front of our peers, friends, and family, or are these just concepts we talk about with our small groups?
Bro. Mike is right – we need more Christians in every profession and walk of life who will take their Christianity wherever they go. These Christians may reach more with their witness than many pastors ever will, because they use the platform that God has given them – business, art, music, teaching, or whatever – to His glory.
I want to be a musician, blogger, scrapbooker, friend, mother, wife who is a Christian and who lives like it. What about you?