This post is part of my ongoing response to the questions I posted as part of this month's book discussion
on Colossians Remixed
by Brian Walsh and Sylvia Keesmaat over at the Emerging Women blog
. (read my other responses - here
Question #7 -
If Christians are not to be at home in an empire characterized by sexual sin, greed, and violence, the authors ask what should the Kingdom look like? They proposed a life lived where the peace of the victim of an empire is spread, where community is lived, gratitude is practiced, and worship proclaims that Christ not Caesar is Lord of our lives. Practical suggestions the authors give include - pledging our allegiance to Christ not to the empire; investing as much each year in the hurtings present needs as we do in our future retirement; paying attention to where our food comes from and what's in it; setting up food co-ops where you can get food produced as locally as possible, in environmentally responsible ways, and that seeks to do justice to the producer of the food; be ecologically responsible by reducing our use of cars and start walking. biking, or using (or lobbying for) public transit; be good stewards of the ecosystem and stop dumping diapers (for babies or women) into the landfills (and hence streams and rivers). How do you react to those suggestions? What else could you add?
I like all of their suggestions. I care about those things. And yet I don’t always live that out. I’ve blogged on that issue before (here
). Sometimes, I don’t know what exactly to do to change things. If I care about stuff like this and still have issues living it out, how can I ever hope to encourage others to live justly?
Plus most of the time I just really don’t know what to say. When my friends and family start going off on things that really contradict my values and understanding of the Kingdom I generally just don’t say anything. I’m torn. I want to share what I am passionate about, but I don’t want to do it in an argumentative way or in a way that invalidates the things they are passionate about. So I don’t say anything and let them assume I completely agree with them.
For example. Easter. We didn’t do the whole egg thing this year. I didn’t want to stuff plastic eggs with cheap crap made in Asian sweat shops nor with unhealthy unneeded candy made by child slaves. I also didn’t want to waste food by dying eggs nor spend money on cheap eggs that support environmentally and ethically harmfully practices. But all my friends were talking about those things. Who has the best price on eggs? On candy? When can we get together to dye eggs? I don’t know what to do in those situations. Do I explain my choices, do I question their choices, and do I endure the “OMG what a religious freak who won’t let her child enjoy life” accusations? (which I of course said about the families who banned the Easter bunny because it detracts from the real meaning of Easter. And shudder that I am coming to the same lifestyle conclusions as the fundamentalists but for completely different reasons)
So this isn’t really a real answer here. Just to say that I find it really easy to write about stuff like this on my blog, but find it a lot harder to consistently put it into practice or to share it with the people I interact with everyday.
Labels: Colossians Remixed, Reflections, Social Justice