Thursday, December 06, 2007

Simplicity, not that simple...


I have been talking lots about simplicity and Advent and Hope...but talk is cheap. Living in a consumer devouring culture that suggests that in every waking moment I should be buying something to better my life is exhausting, and because useless things and gadgets look so inviting, and I wont lie I like shiny things, its hard... But simplicity has become a sort of fad today, we talk about it lots and there is smoke and whistles and then we get comfortable, or maybe I should say I get comfortable...its complex and hard. No my car does not run on vegetable oil and yes I have shopped at WalMart...sigh... and now reading The Irresistible Revolution, living as an ordinary radical I come across this quote:

The old saying goes, Live simply that others may simply live. Simplicity is very popular nowadays. All the time, I get invited to speak at conferences on simple living, and I'm offered nice honorariums to do it! People write books on simplicity and make lots of money. It's weird thing. There are plenty of liberals who talk about poverty and injustice but rarely encounter poor, living detached lives of socially responsible but comfortable consumption. And there are plenty Christians who talk about how much God cares for the poor but don't know any poor folks. There is nothing more sickening than talking about poverty over a fancy dinner. Or how about this one: I once saw an advertisement for a dialogue on global starvation, and the sign boldly read, 'Refreshments will be served.'
So this advent is about discernment for me...reflecting on the Hope I have in the person of Jesus Christ. Who came as a fragile child, and lived with the lowly so that everything could be turned on its head, we are now called to be the body which lives out Hope for the lowly and the hurting, and the lonely we are called into this redemptive lifestyle of bringing heaven into situations of hell here on earth, by feeding the hungry and dressing the naked...hands and feet...a lifestyle of Hope...A hard lifestyle that is very counter cultural. A lifestyle of community, not independence but interdependence with my community...

1 comment:

Kelly said...

Paul;
I got that Shane Claiborne book form Bren for Christmas last year and read it cover to cover in a few days.. very good stuff in there, and I've contemplated his 'accusations' (they're gentle, but real) a lot.