Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Correction Toward Sustainable Economy?

Somewhere in my studies over the years I'd heard that the old Greek oikonomos is the root word for economy. In it's original meaning it speaks of "house rules" or "house management." All the recent national and global economic upheaval certainly points to some problems in the house.

Now I'm not primarily an economic or financial thinker, though I tend to have faith opinions on many topics. While you might go to a financial expert (are there any of those in these times?) what I offer is more a faith and life response to the current changes in the world.

I come from much more conservative south Georgia roots. My people have tended more toward survival and are just now taking steps into middle class suburbia. All the financial instability, job losses, loss of homes, loss of stock value, etc. reminds me how fragile this whole thing is. It also reminds me how much we rely upon our job and financial status to define who we are. In our culture now you take away someones job and you strip so much away that for many it is paralyzing, debilitating, completely overwhelming with seemingly few options.

It all makes me wonder if these are global economic corrections which will return us to a more moderate, sustainable lifestyle. Many of us have been feasting and expecting more the next day. Perhaps this just isn't a sustainable way of living. Perhaps we will be returning to something a little closer to the lifestyles of previous generations. Perhaps we have the flexibility and the resilience to make the adjustments which will create a new order. In my mission journeys I find many people who do have these skills. Now it is our turn to adapt, and maybe as we do that we'll find we have actually strengthened our house.

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