“I didn’t have a category for her”

June 16, 2011

I’ve never read a mass-market Christian bestseller. I missed The Shack, Crazy Love, and don’t get me started on the Left Behind books. But I had Blue Like Jazz lying around, and I’m away from home (in Athens at Annual Conference), which is a little like vacation. And you know how every book you read on vacation (like everything you watch on TV) is a little better than at home? So far that’s true with this book.

Donald Miller has a friend named Penny, who used to be an atheist. She describes to him her friendship with Nadine, a Christian.

The thing I love about Nadine was that I never felt like she was selling anything. She would talk about God as if she knew Him, as if she had talked to Him on the phone that day. She was never ashamed, which is the thing with some Christians I had encountered. They felt like they had to sell God, as if He were soap or a vacuum cleaner, and it’s like they really weren’t listening to me; they didn’t care, they just wanted me to buy their product. I came to realize that I had judged all Christians on the personalities of a few. That was frightening for me, too, because it had been so easy just to dismiss Christians as nuts, but here was Nadine. I didn’t have a category for her.

Donald Miller, Blue Like Jazz (Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 2003), 46.

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