I think it's time for another of Harry James Cargas' pieces.
This is entitled No Such Thing as Half Dead and it is found in chapter 17.
Actively placing ourselves in a religious tradition is not a part-time activity. We are either fully committed or we are not. It is also inaccurate to speak of someone as being half-dead. A person is either alive or not. In the same way, we cannot describe ourselves as somewhat religious or Christian in many ways. We either are or we are not. Our belief and coordinate actions resulting therefrom are a condition. As such, they are total or they are nothing. This is not to imply that we do not have problems or failings. Religion is not so simple a condition, of course. But it does mean that we are willing to struggle with the problems, struggle to overcome our failures, because we consciously want to - because we love God. And because we want to love people. Not abstract people, that great mass of humanity out there, but because we earnestly want to love Henry who has bad breath and Wilma who giggles a lot and Jonathon who talks a great deal about Jonathon and little Julie whose idea of conversation is relating the plot of the latest movie she has seen. Working hard in a religious tradition means working hard at perfecting ourselves. It means knowing, too, that where we don’t fully succeed, God will understand and cooperates in our attempts to do better. This confidence that we can have in God will assist us greatly in the absolute commitment that we make. Human beings are by nature gregarious and religion is by definition a profoundly sharing experience. No Christian is ever alone. No Christian need be lonely because we can have the knowledge that Christ is fully with us (the question only being “are we fully with Jesus?”), and the entire body of believing Christians is also one community sharing our burdens, joys, achievements, griefs, failures, successes. (Emphasis mine)