Today for lunch Lesley and I went to Sam’s Club (hey, how can you beat lunch for two for five dollars!) and we got our grocery shopping in. Well, I guess that is being generous using the pronoun “we.” Lesley got the shopping in and I perused the DVDs and books.
As I looked, I was amazed at how many of the old shows, music, and movies there were. In the television section there was Barnaby Jones, the Lucy Show, Green Acres, and I Dream of Jeanie. In the music section, there was “The Best of…” and fill in your favorite decade from the fifties to the eighties. In the movie section there were many sets of movies with your favorite actors from yesteryear from Clint Eastwood to John Wayne to Jimmy Stewart.
Of course, there was also a number of more contemporary movies, tv series, and music. They were not quite the financial deal as the older material. For what you would spend on six Jimmy Stewart movies, you could buy the latest Harry Potter movie. Nevertheless, you could get what is currently popular at slightly lower prices.
What was missing in all this was preparation for the future. There was almost nothing that someone could pick up, other than a historian, and grow from (other than the hot dog and pretzel I was munching on, and I’m pretty sure if I indulge in too many two and a half dollar meals I’ll see growth in my waist). What is our culture offering us so that, to borrow the old Army phrase, we can “be all that we can be”?
Of course, I also think of this when it comes to church. How much today is the church challenging us? How much are we growing in our faith? How much are we preparing for tomorrow? Or, are we finding in church much of what we find in the entertainment section of Sam’s Club, a wistful look back at what was?
How are we to be the people of the way in this day and age? What are we doing to prepare ourselves for tomorrow? These aren’t joy killer questions. We can enjoy what was. I do believe in the adage that if we don’t know our history that we are forced to repeat it. Nevertheless, spiritually, morally, emotionally, and physically (and fiscally) we need to have one foot in the present and one foot swinging toward tomorrow.
What do you think the Church and Christians should be doing to prepare for what will be?
All the best,