Friday, December 4, 2009

Carnival Christianity

I have been amazed lately at how quickly people walk away from what has been so dear to them. I have watched men & women walk away almost callously from their families. I have watched as people removed themselves from the friendships that took years to establish in just a few moments. Even more sad is watching people throw truth away under the guise of spiritual freedom. Experts tell us this is part of the "post-modern" mentality. If it is then my heart is broken for the coming generations that will feel the negative effects of such temporal decisions of the present generation.

There seems to be a blurring of reality. This is why the "virtual world" that the internet provides has become so popular. It is reported that social networking has now replaced pornography on the internet as the most used activity. People are creating "pseudo-relationships" with people from the past and with total strangers, people they would never even be interested in talking to in a real-time relationship. This blurring of reality makes the mind "...a switching center for all the networks of influence"(Jean Gaudrillard). This generation is being bombarded by many influences but is failing to maintain strong personal distinctives and the result is a blurring of truth.

Kenneth Gergen states that in the present condition of "decentered self", confusion will reign and "without external standards and without internal standards there is only cynicism, panic and freefall"(The Saturated Self").

When the moorings that have held generations strong are pulled up...long term commitments become a thing of the past. "Instead of long-term commitment, the postmodern self just moves onto the next game, to the next show, to the next relationship"(Middleton and Walsh) "This is the nomadic self, on the road with the carnival"

I am watching spiritual carnival teams start up very often these days. Their well decorated "carny" buses pass me by on their way to yet another empty lot in the seedy part of town. Bright lights, party music, cotton candy sermons (a lot of fluff & color but not much nutrition) and a different crowd every night. Nomadic ministry....their ‘Christianity’ is a journey spent searching and chasing. It seems to be the new cool trend to be "searching" but "finding" is totally out of date.
I guess this is why I see so many "Rolling Stones"....just walking away... They see themselves as pioneers but sadly they are appearing to be "wandering nomads" moving from tent to tent.

*This blog post was originally written by Pastor C. Myles Young and was republished on e-luminations.blogspot.com by permission from pastormylesyoung.blogspot.com

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