Connecting with Culture
It’s been said that culture is ‘what we make of the world’, but what does that look like as Christians? How can we begin conversations about what’s goin...
I’m a daydreamer.
I’m constantly imagining what life would be like if I applied for a new job, went on a holiday I’d been looking at, or moved to the coast, or to London, or abroad. A particular temptation here is Rightmove. I find myself searching for properties in the Lake District, Dorset, or the Highlands to see what we could buy with our budget – or twice our budget! And, with summer on the horizon – the most popular time to move house – perhaps you’re currently indulging in this sort of escapism, too.
I’ve always seen this as a fairly harmless hobby, but that was until I started reading the Old Testament stories of the Israelites’ journey to the Promised Land.
I live with my husband and young children in the suburbs of an East Midlands city. It’s a good place, with a lot going for it, and we were clearly led here by God just over 10 years ago. Since then, God has blessed us with a brilliant church, community, amazing friends, and great jobs, all within one or two miles of our home.
But still, my mind sometimes wanders into dissatisfaction. I love walking and beaches, beautiful landscapes and wilderness. Here, there are no spectacular natural wonders – just the city, sitting within a gentle farming landscape dotted with pleasant villages.
My attitude isn’t too dissimilar to the Israelites’ attitude to the Promised Land. As they journeyed through the wilderness, they often refused to trust in God’s goodness and see the blessing right in front of them. So, when they got to the Promised Land, they were intimidated into turning back, wishing they could head somewhere else rather than entering what God had for them (Numbers 14.)
It’s all too easy to have a similar mentality, daydreaming of another life rather than seeing God’s faithfulness in the here and now. But God extends the same invitation to us as he did to the Israelites.
When we commit to the places we’re already in, receive his vision for the work we’re already doing, and see where his Spirit is already moving, we’re then formed into people who witness and trust in his goodness. People who don’t seek to abandon the life we have, but consistently show up in a way that seeks his kingdom and his glory. And then, if we are called to move, it won’t be because of escapism, but because of a desire to live faithfully, wherever we are.
Remember that the next time you’re browsing Rightmove!
Sarah works in Environmental Science and attends St Luke’s Church, Nottingham