At the coal face

Life in Dallas, for me at least, was relatively protected. I moved, almost exclusively, among white middle-class friends and acquaintances. Economic events, for the most part, happened to someone else. What makes life here so different is that one is challenged daily by what happens in the world. China’s economy is down so a minerals exporter like South Africa is hit directly. A rise in the Fed’s interest rate will cause investment funds to dry up as those funds return to the States with a direct impact on employment here. Much of our last Church Council meeting was taken up with the problem of the homeless who come inside for shelter and to enjoy the tea after the service. World events, which tended to pass me by in Dallas, cause poverty to rise (and fall) here in Cape Town. China’s economic woes are not just of academic interest but a real challenge to me as a Christian. How do I respond? One feels that one is really working on the coal face here.

5 responses to “At the coal face

  1. The Economist came out almost simultaneously with a 14 page article on America’s present dominance of the world economy. It noted that when America sneezed the rest of the world caught pneumonia. The question implicit in the article was whether America should take responsibility for the rest of the world. Should Congress, for instance, care what effect a shut down of government will have on little, faraway South Africa? South Africa’s decisions have no effect on the United States, but the same is not true vice versa. Should Christianity enter into this debate, I wonder? What would Jesus do if he were Speaker of the House?!

  2. Can you point me to that article from The Economist? I’m having problems finding it. I’m pondering your last question. The image of Jesus and the money changers comes to mind.

  3. Their article appearing in the October 3rd edition and was labeled Dominant and Dangerous.

  4. Awesome – thanks.

  5. Great thoughts. However, I think that the vast majority of the general population misunderstands his statement about not teaching children Creationism. He is not, at least in this video, saying that we should not understand God to have created through natural processes. Nothing in that statement goes against the basic principles of science. He is referring to Creationism that teaches a literal young earth interpretation of Genesis 1 and 2, that many people try to force into the classroom as hard science.

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