Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Godly characteristics in cultures

There are some things in each culture that I believe reflect God’s desire for humanity.

When God confused the languages of the people at the Tower of Babel, they had no choice but to do what he had commanded Adam & Eve to do in Genesis 1:28, and Noah in Genesis 9:1--spread out and multiply over the face of the earth. When the people spread out on the earth, different cultures developed, each with their own unique traits and languages. I've enjoyed visiting many cultures around the world, and living in a couple of them for longer periods of time.

So after spending a full week with the Brazilian group of university leaders in Los Angeles in early September, I was reminded of one of the God-honoring characteristics of that culture that we in most Western cultures lack: a deep, relational aspect of community. There were a total of 15 of us staying in one large house, and after driving at least for two hours a day to visit each university campus, we spent the evening making dinner and fellowshipping during the meal. We laughed, talked, prayed, and processed through each day like this. Though this specific group of Brazilians don’t always see each other on a daily basis in Brazil, being in close quarters wasn’t a problem for them as their cultural (and God-given) sense of community quickly allowed for them to bond. This is one of those characteristics that I repeatedly see in certain cultures that I believe is what the Church should look like—and when it does, God gets the glory. What a privilege to be in the midst of a “culture of community” while in LA last month. Thank you for your prayers and encouragement during that time, but also for partnering with our family as we proclaim the gospel here and abroad through our efforts in Creation Care.