Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Fragmentation

On Saturday I caught the train up to Bendigo, to talk to the Christian Union group (the Christian club at the university) there, at their training weekend. I was talking about how our society is very fragmented, and about some of the implications that has for Christians.
The first aspect of fragmentation I talked about was the fact that there are a lot of divsions between different social groups, and Christians in particular can end up isolating themselves from the rest of society. I explained a bit about how we try to respond to social divisions in Credo (inviting streeties and corporates to share a meal at the same table), and then about how I moved onto res when I was at uni, after realising that just about all of my social networks were with Christians.
The second aspect of fragmentation I talked about was the way that we tend to see different areas of our lives as independant from each other and completely unrelated. We see our faith as being unrelated to politics, economics, ecology, education and other areas of life. This can effect the way Christians understand and share the gospel, leading to it only being about getting to go to heaven when one dies, and forgetting the stuff about the restoration of God's kingdom on Earth. In other words, we can become completely focused on Christ's death and resurrection, and foget how he lived. One thing that I suggested was praying and reading the scriptures in contexts that we generally don't consider to be spiritual - like at uni, or on the bus or train, after football training, et cetera. Also, when we see how everything is related to our spirituality, it's a lot easier (possibly even unavoidable) to share our spirituality with others.
I also mentioned a couple of things about how we've ended up alienated from the rest of God's creation. Although God's original purpose for human beings in Genesis was to look after the Earth (2:15), we tend to see the Earth as something seperate from ourselves, which is ours to exploit. Also, because we've allowed ourselves to become distanced from the rest of creation, we have less opportunity for God's creation to remind us of God, and it's more difficult to believe in his goodness, or even existence.

Yesterday I went up to Bendigo again (three times so far this year) to hear Paul Dyson talk about nuclear power, uranium mining and nuclear weapons. I took this 15-second exposure of the moon on the way back:

We don't get to see the heavens very clearly here in Melbourne because of the light pollution.

When I consider your heavens,
the work of your fingers,
the moon and the stars,
which you have set in place,
what are mere mortals that you are mindful of them,
human beings that you care for them?
(Psalm 8:3-4)

3 comments:

Sammy said...

Bendigo is awesome, but I still haven't met you!! Maybe next time.

And wow, thanks for adding me to your link list!

Christop said...

Yeah, we're going to be up in Bendigo again Easter Monday, to set up this art installation/alternative worship space.

Trav said...

I agree that when we see how everything does relate to our sprituality it is indeed much easier to share it with others.

It just makes more sense.