Author: To Be Christian is to Be Uncool

Being cool is contradictory to the Christian faith, according to one author.

Paul Grant, author of Blessed are the Uncool, defines cool as an attitude, a habit, a worldview, a feeling. The modern cool is "the private performance of rebellion for rebellion's sake," he says, and Jesus is not necessarily cool.

"Jesus was primarily a dutiful son, not a raging rebel," says Grant, according to InterVarsity Christian Fellowship.

Grant points to a more modern figure - Martin Luther King, Jr. King, who is remembered for his nonviolent civil rights movement and never looked to rebellion.

"He was hated; he was scared. But he did it because God had called him to it," says Grant. "Rebellion is a serious matter for God. King had a vision for a new reality."

Deconstructing the cultural phenomenon of cool, Grant points to the existence of "cool Christianity," or rather, "a resolute disassociation from embarrassing churches or older Christians."

Grant contends, however, that cool contradicts "so many of the best reasons to follow Christ."

"Human life is about relationships, but cool prefers control. Real love is about belonging, but cool demands freedom. Cool involves being numb; faith allows us to feel the world more deeply."

Ultimately, a life spent chasing after cool is exposed for the fickle, fruitless and inauthentic life that it is, according to the book's description.

"Cool is never done being cool," Grant writes. "Since this contempt for authority applies to tradition and current affairs alike, we can say that cool exists outside of time."

To live whole, healthy lives, Grant says one has to ultimately feel uncool. "When we feel lonely and vulnerable - when we feel uncool - God is inviting us to a whole life."

Being Christian may mean being uncool, but it results in abundance.

"Authentic faith is uncool in the sense that it is unashamed. Christians are far richer than the empty bravado behind cool because our story is a great story: a God dies to give us life in abundance," says Grant. "And once we've begun to live uncool, our story will get ever sweeter."