Well-meaning Christians are quick to point out that Romantic Christianity sets the bar too high for most people to follow.
Whenever I hear something along those lines, I am immediately reminded of Dostoevsky's Grand Inquisitor who accuses Jesus of overestimating human nature and setting the bar too high for most people to follow. The Grand Inquisitor spends the bulk of the story explaining why and how he and his church have set about "correcting" Jesus's "mistake".
What was Christ's mistake? ". . . a kind of promise of freedom which they in their simplicity and inborn turpitude are unable even to comprehend, which they go in fear and awe of—for nothing has ever been more unendurable to man and human society than freedom!"
The Grand Inquisitor then goes on to accuse Christ of cruelty for expecting so much of people. Why didn't He simply give into the temptations in the desert and provide the people what they really wanted?
Mystery. Miracle. Authority.
Had Christ provided that, He would have unburdened people of their freedom, and they would have followed Him slavishly without question because -- as the Grand Inquisitor points out -- nothing is more unbearable for man than freedom.
But Christ did not give into the temptations. He refused to relieve people of their "burden" of freedom. On the contrary, He sought to increase freedom. And this, according to the Grand Inquisitor, reveals Christ's cruelty in setting the bar too high.
I could go on, but I think the point is clear. If the bar for Romantic Christianity is too high, then it is too high in the same sense that Jesus's offer of freedom is "too high" in the Grand Inquisitor story.
At its core, The Legend of the Grand Inquisitor is about faith. It reveals the undeniable fact that Jesus has immense faith in us. The Grand Inquisitor considers this to be a mistake on Jesus's part.
I believe Jesus's faith in us reveals a foundation upon which we can co-create something truly divine.
The Grand Inquisitor story reveals that Jesus had faith in us. Sadly, it also reveals our lack of faith in ourselves and others. More significantly, it reveals our lack of faith in Jesus. More precisely, our lack of faith in His faith in us.
Christians have a choice before them. Do they start finally living up to Christ's faith in them or do they continue to regard Christ's faith in them to be a mistake that needs perpetual correcting a lá some Grand Inquisitor or other?
Simply put - it is spiritually impossible for Christians to have faith in Jesus if they reject the faith Jesus has in them.
It is spiritually impossible for Christians to have faith in Jesus if they believe that He set the bar too high.
For me, a big part of Romantic Christianity involves having faith in Jesus's faith in us. It involves recognizing that the bar He set is not "too high."