Sunday, June 05, 2005

Overcoming Christian consumerism

At The Ooze Mark Van Steenwyk discusses consumerism and Christianity. In addition to the consumerism that pervades society, there are dangers of viewing discipleship through a consumeristic paradigm:

Consumerism is the Spirit of our Age. We look at all things through its lens. Everything from goods--to relationships--to our God, falls victim to the consumerist impulse, and is thus commodified. . . . the challenge is for us to change the way we understand our ownership of resources, to change the way we understand our relationship to the larger world. We must stop viewing ourselves as autonomous and sovereign consumers, and begin to authentically understand ourselves as stewards or trustees.

Mark describes perspectives that arise from moving beyond the lens of consumerism: remembering that everything we own belongs to God, that relationships are not commodities, and that "churches are not dispensers of goods and services." Finally, he leaves us with this thought:

Our God isn't the ultimate commodity. We don't see Jesus. We don't buy-in to belief. Our response to God is one of worship. He consumes us.



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