Tuesday, November 13, 2012
Are there implications for children?
Probably many more than what you will find in this post! Probably far more than those jumping out at me after only one quick read.
But here's one. We live in such a global, technological world. We want our message to be relevant to the children of this world. We tend to use media and images and metaphors from this world.
Are we using fewer and fewer images from scripture and looking for others because kids can't relate? Adults can't relate? Are we using fewer and fewer of the images of scripture because we are becoming less and less agrarian? less and less rural? less and less dependent on the land and as a result we have less and less interaction with the natural world that God has made? Because we live different life styles?
Or maybe kids' concentration skills are device (or non-device) specific.
Are there ways to offer children (and adults) the experiences of hands-on Biblical imagery and at the same time strengthen their connection with the greater natural (human and non-human) God-created world?
The understandings, sensibilities, know-how, wisdom, experience of someone visiting a farm or forest the first time isn't the same as a third generation full-time impassioned farmer or naturalist (or even engineer.) But if you want to go there (even for a short visit), you have to start somewhere. Every time you see and experience the same world it's different. God-given capability with the capacity to grow.
How do we balance the interdependence of man and the non-human natural world that allows us to continue to coexist - dependent, independent, interdependent. How do we apply our Biblical understandings to environmental activism? To pet and land ownership? To our interaction with the outdoors? What lines do we draw? How about the way we see livestock - not human but living creatures, nonetheless. What about man? Are we are creatures first and humans second? What if the world really doesn't revolve around just us? Or even just God? Are we an intergral part of the system or only one part of an integral system?
We have more access to the human social cultural global community than ever before and hopefully more empathy. What are those passages about what God has made? What God fills? What all belongs to Him? Ownership? What does that mean? Discipline? Responsibility? Freedom?
Dr. Freitheim's scriptural observations are timely. Changing our thinking will take time. It's interesting to me how cultural changes open the door for us to see things in scripture we might not see had we lived in another time, and visa versa. But I suppose a Living Word is like that.
For the record! God is still God: the Beginning and the End, Creator, Father-Son-Holy Spirit. He is all that He says He is, all that the scriptures reveal. He is the same yesterday, today, tomorrow - forever. Jesus is Lord! In the greatest sense of the word. In the greatest sense of the Word and all that He's created.