In times of “economic downturn”, there’s an annoying little trick that manufacturers like to do. Maybe you’ve noticed it when you go the grocery store. The prices of certain items go up, but the size or quantity of the same items go down.
That’s right–you are paying more money for less stuff.
I even heard that some olive oil manufacturers are planning to dilute the oil they sell you.
Now, I know the purpose behind this is usually to try and keep costs down so they don’t have to drive the prices way up. But when it happens, it’s still hard not to feel like you are being ripped off.
In part 1 of this series, I began talking about the idea of equality, about the belief that people should be treated as equals without regard to race, gender, socio-economic standing, or other differentiating qualities–especially in the church. I mused that there really is not a strong emphasis on equality in the Scripture, but rather a mandate not to show favoritism in the church, and a mandate to prefer others above ourselves rather than treat them as equals. I referred to this as moving past equality into the celebration of uniqueness. And I suggested that “equality” is a mathematical term that we inadvertently use to draw comparisons on the value of people, and that this is why we need to move past it.
Kathy over at the carnival in my head has been doing a great series of posts called “what could be.” One of her recent entries was about “equality practiced,” in which she shares about how the church should intentionally practice equality with one another with regard to gender, race, socio-economic standing…in all things.
I’ve been mulling over this one for days, and finally decided to post my thoughts here rather than in her comments. And this post is in two parts so as not to overwhelm the reader. 🙂
**Note: For those of you who remember the phantom in my laptop…when I first typed the word “deconstruct” this morning, it came out “deconsuc”. 🙂
Among the lingo that surrounds me (and that I use frequently) is the word “deconstruction”. A lot of us are using this word to describe our spiritual walk as an attempt to get real about our faith. And what it usually means is that we are removing the institutional forms of Christianity from our lives, and/or leaving those institutions behind, without forsaking our faith.
Mark Main at The Untried has written two posts about “Assumptions”, reflecting on the flak he has taken in his departure from institutional church, and the assumptions those in his circle have made about his faith and his motives. The list was actually surprising to me, how many things have been said about him and his family–everything from how he’s a heretic to how he’s leading his own children away from God.
A few weeks back, I began publishing a series of posts on “Re-Thinking Worship”, and talked about how my perspectives of worship were being expanded beyond the typical worship-leader sing-along format. (If you want to read the series–seven posts thus far–you can find them under the “worship” category in the right sidebar of my blog.)
Feeling a bit better today…thanks for all the prayers and well-wishes. 🙂
The comments generated from my earlier post on False Spiritual Benchmarks were good, and they have prompted some more thoughts on my part–now that my thinking is less muddled, that is. 🙂
I’ve gotten to pondering why we create these benchmarks in the first place. Why and how did we resort to measuring our spiritual health by how much we pray, or fast, or read the Bible, or any other specific activities we classify as spiritual? Again, not saying we shouldn’t do those things, but where did we get the idea that these practices are what make us more spiritual, “better” Christians, and so on?