Wednesday, February 04, 2009

the trouble with paris

just read this fantastic book from aussie missionary Mark Sayers.  Mark writes of our enslavement in 'hyperreality' where "everything has become shopping" (p.51).  as supershoppers we are always looking out for a better deal and end up unable and unwilling to commit - to relationships, homes, places, gods.  why commit when there might be a better deal around the corner?

Mark writes with a very gracious style.  he is never shrill or self righteous....easy ways to be when critiquing our consumer culture.  after identifying the tyranny of hyperreality Mark offers a way out.  the path towards God's reality is marked by honesty, commitment, missional spirituality, countercultural community, redemptive living, and, last but not least, Jesus.  in short, mark suggests that the remedy for the everyday distractions of hyperreality is an intentional care for everyday christian ethics.  these six keys form a matrix in which everyday faithfulness is possible and sustainable.

i recommend this book very highly as a creative and piercing description of the mess we have made with our faith in the west.  his brief discussion of folk religion should peak the interest of anyone interested in a missiology for pluralistic western cultures. 

i was delighted to find a copy of this book at the public library...it will be returned and up for grabs as of tomorrow :)

on a side note, i have met mark a couple of times and heard him speak in australia on numerous occasions.  he is a most kind and passionate communicator and he is one of the sharpest missional thinkers going around at the moment...and best of all, his insights are drawn from and rooted in the streets and life of his city and community.

2 comments:

Simon said...

Thanks for the recommendation

geoff and sherry said...

you're welcome, simon. as i read this particular book by mark sayers i made notes that included, "the antidote to everyday consumerism is simon holt's everyday christian ethics". i really enjoyed the podcasts from the aussie radio interviews. thanks for your work...it nourishes our life in kentucky.

geoff