This last week, I felt like chains fell from my wrists, ankles, mind. I opened this book and began scarfing down what I’ve been starving for for so long and didn’t know it. I cannot remember the last time I felt so FED by a book, by truth. About what, you ask?
I know, this seems so dry, boring, unexciting. Please, track with me:
Even though my entire life is about the Sacred Mundane, even though my passion is destroying the sacred/secular duality and seeing all of life as a means of seeing and glorifying God, even though I just wrote a stinkin’ BOOK on this topic, I now see that I myself DID in fact allow my faith to be pushed to the margins of my life and relegated to a privatized corner of religious activity, safe and virtually ineffective, rendered useless for effecting change in the public spheres of life.
See, I only spoke on safe topics. Only at religious events where Bible teaching was acceptable. I NEVER talked politics, current events, or spoke out on cultural issues. Truthfully, I was content to be the Bible-reading girl who shared little devotional snippets here and there about how to be more joyful in your mundane.
But here’s the thing that’s blowing my mind: God is the CREATOR of this world. Think about that for a moment. He’s the CREATOR. Not just of America. Of the whole world. So, He KNOWS exactly how things should be, all wisdom and insight and genius and creativity all come from Him.
He is the SOURCE of all things. All wisdom.
So, we should then be able to see all of life through the lens of the Scriptures. I’m laughing as I type this because my book has an ENTIRE CHAPTER on this topic. BUT, I have never been taught how to develop a biblical worldview. That is, I’ve never learned how to intelligently engage with current events, culture, media, politics, arts, through the uniquely biblical lens of the Scriptures.
And here’s why:
In our culture, Christianity has been allowed to survive because it has been relegated to an obscure corner labeled “personal religious beliefs” which renders it completely useless for having any real impact on the actual goings on in our world. That is, we’re fine if people want to pray the sinners prayer, but DO NOT bring that Bible stuff into the workplace, government, education, healthcare, etc. No no.
Religious belief is allowable in your private life, but here in the public realm, we make decisions based on purely objective Reason.
Here’s the problem: There is no such thing as objective Reason.
But, I’ve believed it. I’ve swallowed the pill that says, “Yeah, I can’t give biblical reasons for any of the things I believe which have widespread implications, so I guess I just can’t be part of this discussion. I guess we have to have public arguments based solely on secular principles.”
But secular principles are not neutral.
Nothing’s neutral. Nothing’s objective. Every philosophical system assumes some beginning “first principle.” That is, ALL knowledge depends upon religious truth. So even the secular “objective” reasoning depends upon some assumed self-existent truth. As Pearcey writes in Total Truth:
“It’s a mistake to even to think of reason as neutral, in the sense of being independent of any philosophical or religious commitments. All systems of thought begin with some basic premise — some ultimate principle that is regarded as self-existing or divine. Reason is merely the human capacity to reason from those starting premises. In short, reason is always exercised in service to some ultimate religious vision. People interpret the facts in the light of either biblical revelation or some competing thought.”
Yes! See, ever so subtly, over the years, even during my college days and throughout the past 18 years, I have slowly and subtly believed the lie that “religious” knowledge must be confined to private spheres, while “objective reasoning” (which, doesn’t exist) is the only tool to use in the public spheres of government, education, science, etc. And since the only real knowledge I have is biblical knowledge, I figured that I better stay away from these public spheres because I clearly didn’t have anything to add.
So what happened was, God ruthlessly kicked me out of the private realm! During my nice quiet 40-day fast (a private religious activity where I minded my own business), He went and did something crazy — He told me who to vote for! And THEN, He clearly told me to share publicly who I voted for. GAH! I cried my eyes out, sweat, lay awake at night, and panicked. Even though I certainly wasn’t telling anyone else what to do or implying I had the corner on the truth, I was terrified to EVEN SET FOOT in that realm.
I was terrified to apply spiritual insight to a public sphere.
And, because I didn’t have the tools to think critically and articulate biblically-informed views, when people asked me, “Why did you do that?” I shook my head, blushed, and said, “Um, I felt like God told me to.”
Not exactly a compelling answer.
See, I do believe that just by virtue of reading through the entire Bible 18 times, every single day for the last 18 years, that I have developed some sense of biblical worldview.
The Bible is the loudest voice in my life, hands down. I’ve “heard” more from the Scriptures than any person, even my parents, spouse, anyone. Nothing has spoken louder in my life than the Bible, applied supernaturally to my life by His Spirit.
So, that’s enough to at least make some sense of things, but I’ve never learned how to then intentionally develop a biblical worldview on public issues, and certainly never dared to say one out loud, for fear of being seen as idiotic, simplistic, uneducated, and narrow-minded.
And while I’m probably all those things, so is everyone else in light of Who God is, and His truth is TOTAL TRUTH. He has the genius insight on all things, and when we abandon His Word as THE SOURCE of all truth, then we inadvertently take up the “religion” of secularism, unknowingly falling prey to its false systems which are, at the core, contrary to God.
So, I don’t know where any of this will take me, other than to my knees. That’s where it’s taken me so far. I find myself feeling ALIVE like I have never felt before. I find myself feeling JOY like I’ve never felt before. I feel CONFIDENCE like I have never felt before. Not in myself, but in GOD! Sure, I don’t have the wisdom in and of myself, but HE has the answers, HE has the hope, HE has the truth, He has the words of eternal life, not just the ones that apply to private spiritual matters, but ALL THINGS THAT PERTAIN TO LIFE, are found in the knowledge of CHRIST.
In Christ is ALL knowledge.
Christian, rejoice! There is a place for your voice in this world, for your Christlike care and compassion, for your wit and wisdom, for your humble critique and keen insight. Take heart, Christian!
Do not let your faith in Christ be relegated to a meaningless margin of your life. Jesus redeems ALL of life, for His glory. I’m excited to continue journeying this way with you. Thanks for your grace and patience with me along the way. Thanks for reading.