Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Serving Jesus in a culture of abundance

Last weekend I picked up the next book from my 'to-read' stack (which has become a wall that divides my room in two), The 180 Degree Christian by Carter Conlon, the senior pastor of Times Square Church in New York. An interesting read so far.

Conlon zooms in on our westernized Christianity. It feels kind of awkward and uncomfortable to look in the mirror of our own faith. Yet, at the same time I am recognizing a theme that keeps coming back in this present time. How can we practice basic Christianity in a culture of abundance?

No matter how sincere we try to focus, every now and then we all get distracted by life's worries AND luxuries at the same time. Let me know if anyone has found a way to avoid this :) I write about this struggle between our natural and spiritual life in my latest book My Neighbor's House. Honesty is the key when writing about all the stuff that will distract us from being focused on the great commandment and the great commission.

I remember how, years ago, I drove around in a USA city at night, for the very first time in my life. All the lights, all the bill boards, all the blinking and flickering signs... It was all new to me. I cried out to my husband: 'I can't see the traffic lights, there are too many colors.' It seems funny now, but isn't this how it feels to live in a culture where there is plenty of choices, plenty of everything? No wonder we sometimes loose sight of clear directions.

If you're ready to pick up a book (or two) on stewardship and holy living, you might want to consider The 180 degree Christian and/or My Neighbor's House.
Happy reading!