Monday, April 23, 2007,7:02 PM
Colossians Remixed 7
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.

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posted by Julie at 7:02 PM ¤ Permalink ¤


  • At 4/23/2007 09:34:00 PM, Blogger gerbmom

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  • At 4/23/2007 09:38:00 PM, Blogger gerbmom

    had to fix something....sorry.

    And shudder that I am coming to the same lifestyle conclusions as the fundamentalists but for completely different reasons

    Yes, but you aren't demanding people stop their "obviously" incorrect practice in the name of the Lord or denigrating them for their choices either. There is a distinct difference. You are just following your convictions and raising a healthy, responsible, socially conscious child. I applaud your decisions....

  • At 4/24/2007 08:35:00 PM, Anonymous sonja

    I think in this, as in many other things, you have to pick your battles. None of us can do everything. We just can't. It's impossible to live like that anymore because the infrastructure is so tilted against us. So we have to choose the things that are most important to our families and do those. Pick one or two to focus on until they become habits and ingrained. Then pick one or two more to focus on. But if you try to do them all at one, it's like swallowing an elephant in one gulp.

    And (after Easter, of course!) I found a site with directions for dying brown eggs with pictures of the beautiful, but more earthy tones you get. So ... next year ... socially-conscious Easter eggs for us ;-) I found a cool site that had directions for dying eggs using food (such as onion skins)

    Make small treats with your daughter; popcorn balls, pull taffy, rice krispie treats, cookies, etc.

    There are ways to participate in the general goings-on that allow your conscience to rest, but also give you some connections with what everyone else is doing too.

    In any case, no matter what you decide, I agree with gerbmom ... you are following your convictions and raising a healthy, responsible, socially conscious child. I applaud your decisions ...


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