Friday, May 11, 2007

pause before game 1...


...ever read an article that makes you want to respond immediately to it's contents? Once in a while that happens to me, and I wish I could say I follow through every time. But anyways, this morning I read from "Relevant" magazine, an article called "Laying it Down. Learning to live with less in a culture of excess." It was challenging.

Challenging as someone who has lived at various locations in the spectrum of a consumer-driven economy. Growing up on foodstamps, taking donations from churches for clothing/toys/food...to living "The American Dream", owning two cars, a computer, a big screen, and enough credit card debt to last my lifetime. So many moments come where I want off this ride. This article brings into focus the reasons I would love to just quit being the consumer I've been trained to be. But what am I ready to change?

"Do the RED Thing", the article brings up the RED campaign that became popular a while back...spending hundreds of millions on marketing, and raising less than 20 million for the actual cause. Ouch.

But what about an individual level? What does it mean to have "enough"? What does it mean to have too much? What excess can I begin to shed/let go of? What radical surrendering is Christ calling Chadwick Anderson to?

Do I love my daughter by spoiling her with every fun little toy possible, or love her by teaching her how to be content with little, and enabling her to give to others? These are definitely things I need to be thinking about now...and making the changes necessary now...and living towards others now.

And how about as a youth pastor? What defines a successful youth ministry/church? Tons of flat screens with video games, new couches/cafe seats, and an oversized sound/lighting system? Do I measure success by how many lives I'm able to touch? What does community look like in regards to "youth group"?

In 10 years, when the youth room looks the same, will everyone in the church appreciate that I've spent more time developing relationships than a flashy "club" or "program"? Lord help me...as an individual....as a part of this body....and as someone who feels Your call to lead others.

5 comments:

Jake T said...

good questions. definately, one's i'm asking myself too.

When I think about the future, I almost always think about making more (enough?) money eventually.

The consumeristic drive is built in to me so deep...I don't know how to fight it.

smokin' loon said...

I say, build the relationships... then throw in fancy lighting. Makes everyone happy :)

It's funny that I read this tonight... I just got done with my financial planning for the year and about had a good cry. Living of school loans sucks. But, it did help my wife and I talk about somoe of the stuff that we were gonna buy for our new apartment. Goodwill, here we come! :)

One-T said...

dude something i struggle with. we have enough, why do we always want more, and then i see things like this. something i need to continue to pray about. i always thought i was more giving then selfish. my bad

Greg said...

I saw your post about your daughter. I am a New York Times bestselling author working on a new book about father-daughter relationships and thought you might want to contribute. Please visit my page for details about submitting stories for Daddy's Little Girl.

Gregory E. Lang
Author, Why a Daughter Needs a Dad

GalloPinto2 said...

Just wanted to say that I like the new look of your page...

Also, I read that same article...I get so frustrated when people in the US get all sad because they don't have a Nintindo Wii or the nicest car or the best job...we have so much here and yet we take it all for granted. The time I spent in Guatemala I realized just how happy people who live in shacks with dirt floors are compared to people in the US who live in huge houses...

Thanks for the post...

Denise Knee