The greatest enemy facing American Christians today is not atheism, according to Stanley Hauerwas, but sentimentalism. It is the mentality that goes: “I’m not going to sacrifice my family for anything” or “Loyalty is the most important virtue.” It has the veneer of respectability but it is essentially idolatry. I’ve been suffering from this temptation lately. My wife and precious 1 year old daughter’s comfort, safety, and prospects have become more and more an overriding concern in my decision-making processes. Yes, of course, as 1 Timothy 5:8 states: “But if anyone does not provide for his relatives, and especially for members of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.” And don’t get me wrong. My family is a true blessing from God. But the sentimentalist in me holds too dearly to this verse to the ignorance of passages like Matthew 10:37-38 (“Whoever loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me, and whoever loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. And whoever does not take his cross and follow me is not worthy of me”). One other interesting aspect of all this is that those churches that seek only pastors who are married and have children are signs of our sentimentalist times. They are most certainly not being biblical (see e.g., 1 Corinthians 7:26-35).