Manhattan has nothing to do with God. It is, in some ways, a spectacular rejection of Christian values—specifically in its worship of money, fame, and success—but mainly money. I really don’t want to submit to that. But what I am learning to submit to is letting the city teach me how to live in it, rather than trying to wrestle New York City into my rural-suburban mind-set.
I never thought of it this way, but New York does seem to mold life to its contours. Chicago is a more accommodating city, even in our downtown, which is the equivalent of Manhattan. Manhattan packs so much, has so much; it demands more than it affords accommodation.