Thursday, July 13, 2006

Christianity and Consumerism

Leadership Blog: Out of Ur: From Lord to Label: how consumerism undermines our faith

This is a great excerpt of an article regarding the current state of Christian consumerism. The author states:

When we approach Christianity as consumers rather than seeing it as a comprehensive way of life, an interpretive set of beliefs and values, Christianity becomes just one more brand we consume along with Gap, Apple, and Starbucks to express identity....Approaching Christianity as a brand (rather than a worldview) explains why the majority of people who identify themselves as born-again Christians live no differently than other Americans.

The author's opinion is that idolatry may not be the primary problem as much as "living to consume" is at the core of the corruptive influences of consumerism. The article reminded me of de Tocqueville's warning that democracy/capitalism, though the best form of government, can distract people from "heavenly mindedness." In other words, we are distracted from the deeper matters of our souls by our material booty.

Despite all her current shortcomings, the Church can and should be a bastion of soulishness and virtue. We can still be a place where the soul is fed above the promptings of our consumer-trained felt needs.

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