The friend part is perhaps the one positive. I've been hanging out a lot, and we have a true friendship. He gave me a x-mas present last Friday when we went out to dinner. It's A Year with CS Lewis. It also had a great handwritten note, that was truly reflective of who he is and how he views me. He talked about how he believes a higher power brought us together, and that we fill voids in each others lives. While I'll agree with the latter, I don't agree with the former. I think this book will be great, and I'll probably start reading it the way it was meant to be, a passage a day, starting either next Monday or on 1/1/04.
This is also the friend who half-jokingly/half-seriously asked me to start a church with him. His faith is very strong, but he also recognizes that the traditional church has to adapt if they want their message to reach beyond the typical church crowd. Now there are churches that have modernized, from my parents to others which are even more liberal/modern. He describes many of these churches as "seeker" churches, for people who are "seeking" the truth. He asked me to be involved because he sees me as a seeker, someone who constantly questions, and believes I have the analytical/business mind to help a new business grow. While I do feel I could do this okay, I wouldn't truly succeed as I wouldn't be buying into the mission. I do think he's on the right track though, recognizing that a church needs some business background if it wants to succeed.