Exile Two - The Future of Our Culture (Article from Stephen McAlpine)
Friends, I plead with you to read this article from Stephen McAlpine regarding the cultural shift that is fast approaching those of us who follow Jesus. There are big implications for Christians in the workplace. Stephen is a crafty writer and apparently (I'm new to his stuff) a brilliant guy - so take your time with this one. If you are as dull-minded as I am, it'll take a moment. It is worth it.
Here is the beginning of the article, which serves as a good summary:
"The Western church is about to enter stage two of its exile from the mainstream culture and the public square. And it will not be an easy time."
As we enter stage two of our exile from the mainstream, I believe we need a double-barreled approach: (1) to engage and shape culture in the arts, business, education, and politics and (2) to get our minds right for when scorn and hate are the norm.
I confess that sometimes I stick my head in the sand dismissively. Maybe that is because it is exhausting to watch Christians stand back from 'the world' and throw verbal grenades instead of engaging in love. There is so much talk about the sky falling that I tend to just go inside the house.
Regarding our workplace, this shift towards Exile Two is going to hit us hard. In fact, that's part of the impetus for me deciding to write Walking Through Walls. It is going to become increasingly difficult for us to be salt and light.
We know how this ends. 1 John 4:4 says:
Little children, you are from God and have overcome them, for he who is in you is greater than he who is in the world. (1 John 4:4 ESV)
We have much reason for hope. The sky is not falling. It may get harder for us to follow Jesus in the public square, but nothing can separate us from the love of God (Romans 8:39). With promises like that, we can grab our shield and a pail of water and go wash the feet of those who revile Christ in us. If they spit in our hair while we wash their toe jam, we can just wash it off.