the gratitude economy

Yesterday, we had the privilege of attending an event downtown with about 500 other Christians, where we gathered to contemplate the following question:

“How would our lives — and our world — be different if we started from a place of gratitude to God for what we have?” (instead of upward mobility, wealth, keeping up with the Joneses, etc)

Specifically, we pondered this question as it related to the food we buy and eat, the water we drink, the toxins we keep in our house (and put on our bodies), and our overall impact on the world God has entrusted to us.

Afterward, we enjoyed a community meal together and joined a bluegrass band and sang some great old hymns. The real treat of the evening was hearing a message from Shane Claiborne, a neomonastic activist and writer and founder of the Simple Way, an intentional community in Philadelphia.  I first read Claiborne’s The Irresistible Revolution way back when it came out in 2005, and it changed the way I view faith in action.  I’ve written extensively about Claiborne on this blog, so it was neat to see and hear him in person for the first time.

The thing that really impressed us, though, was the guy’s humility and joy.  As he told stories he’s undoubtedly told thousands of times before, he was genuinely and visibly tickled or touched by them.  That’s because the truths of his experiences and anecdotes are timeless and forever relevant.  Claiborne is someone who attempts to put into practice — in community — the Gospel of Jesus, no matter how scandalous or countercultural it may be.

Consider this question today: “How would our lives — and our world — be different if we started from a place of gratitude to God for what we have?”

One response to this post.

  1. Interesting. Our minister has been preaching a series on gratitude for the past month. I have been hearing a lot about gratitude lately. I’ve even been using it in my work.

    Is this a trend or a coincidence?


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