Christianity: A Total Life System

A pastor friend of mine, a Zambian, recently wrote that he had just returned from Zimbabwe where he was invited to attend a workshop on climate change and environmental impact. Lawrence and his Zambian team visited a settlement of 167 families just outside Harare. They were discussing the effects of climate and environmental change with these families, especially the issue of erratic rainfall. When the team asked the reasons for this change of rain pattern a young woman responded, “Previously, we used to invoke ancestral spirits for rainfall and they answered by giving us adequate rain, today we pray to the Christian God and because most church leaders are insincere God is not answering our prayers.” Pastor Lawrence was moved by this young woman’s response and wrote, “What touched me most was her understanding of the comprehensive nature of genuine Christianity. Genuine Christianity is a way to see and comprehend reality. This young woman understands that scripture is intended to be the basis for all of life. She has a point. In the creation account we are told that God created everything and therefore everything is subject to him.  The implication is that every subject we explore, from ethics to politics, economics to climate or environmental science, the truth is found only in relationship to God. God created the earth and everything in it and delegated some of His authority to man. He expected us to take responsibility for the environment. God was careful how he made the earth and the young lady in her naivety is making an appeal to Christians not to be careless about how we take care of it.” He went on to say that “authentic Christianity is more than a relationship with Jesus expressed in personal piety and church attendance. Christianity is a total life system.” Here our brother and sister African believers have much to teach us in the West especially since we are prone to compartmentalize our faith and often fail to express it as “a total life system.” Some of us might have argued with the young woman that climate change is a left-wing invention not having any basis in science. Let me tell you what Lawrence and his team did. “We then invited the community to pray with us basing our prayers on 2 Chron. 7:14. As the women were praying the Lord opened the heavens and rains came. There was much celebration and I am sure we left the community with renewed faith and hope for a better future.” Very inspiring . . . just a thought.

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3 responses to this post.

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