Christianity, including that seen in the churches Diana visited, is awakening to the understanding that our faith is more than just talking about the “promised land” up in the sky; that it’s even more about fulfilling God’s promise of making this world right in the here and now. These churches recognize that at the heart of their spirituality is a call to bring justice to those who are suffering at the hands of oppressive individuals and systems. And, on an even deeper level, to work with people to understand the underlying misguided assumptions and priorities that lead to inequity and injustice.
Churches are rediscovering the prophetic voice of the Hebrew scriptures and the liberating and dignifying messages and actions of Jesus. And they are working through hands-on service and through bringing influence on government and business leaders to solve educational inequality, lack of affordable housing, lack of mental health resources, nutritional inequality, prisoner mistreatment, and so much more. For these churches and their members, they understand that faith isn’t just for individual psychological therapy, but for the healing of the nations.
- Have you or your church ever been involved in seeking to alleviate or solve a local justice issue?
- Has your pastor ever been arrested for breaking a law in defense of a higher law?
- Many Christians bemoan the fact that they believe America is no longer a “Christian nation.” In light of this chapter, how would you describe an America that was genuinely “Christian”?
- How do we keep our devotion to seeking justice in the world from devolving into just playing politics and choosing political sides on issues?