We’ve decided to share some of my book with you. So on Thursdays, for the next few months, you get a taste of what I’ve written. Feel free to tell me what you think. Or click the link at the bottom and get the whole thing for yourself, and your Christian friends, who really need to hear this.
Now think back with me for a bit. In the 1939 movie The Wizard of Oz, two shifts took place; one revolutionized the film industry forever. The first shift stunned audiences as a modest black-and-white Dorothy (Judy Garland) was transformed into a living color Dorothy in the magical Land of Oz. There, she met the scarecrow, the tin-man and the lion, also in living color. The second shift slipped into the movie with a bit more subtlety. Dorothy’s first words, as she scanned the horizon of this strange new land called Oz were “I don’t think we’re in Kansas anymore, Toto!” Truer words could not have been spoken. North American audiences were wowed at the vibrancy of color movies for the first time. And Dorothy’s scripted words heralded an era that would become prophecy fulfilled some 30 years later.
Look around you today and you find a world substantially different than the one you grew up in. Whether you grew up in the 60s, 70s or the 90s, or 00s the world has taken a turn around a corner that cannot be retraced. The last century saw two of the worst wars imaginable, a flu epidemic that annihilated 30,000,000 of the world’s population in 1918-1919, the nationalizing and unification of Europe, the rise and fall of Soviet Communism, the isolation of the great sleeping giant, China (and then its reintegration into the world economy at the turn of the last century), the proliferation of the automobile, and the introduction of mobile phones to the world’s teenagers. Politically, nationalism gaveway to global commerce and communication. In the field of art, reticent Impressionists succumbed to thedada influences. The century endedwith streaming video and a questionable reality— what IS real, in a new art form, FX movies like The Matrix. And we drove to see it in vehicles that the earlier 1900s could never have imagined.
Time did not stand still. To the contrary, technology accelerated it. From its humble beginnings in the mid 1940s government enclaves, to its wide spread popularization as Macs/Apples, and PCs in the early 80s, to its utility transformation, later woven into “the World Wide Web,” the personal computer overran not only the western world, but ALL of the world. Just as the automobile changed the way we worked and lived in the first decadesof the 1900s, so computerized communications have affected everything from national defense systems to personal privacy, to interpersonal (read cyber) relationships.
It’s a different world out there. The way people think, talk, travel, communicate, eat, and live have all changed over the past 50 years, and especially within the last 20 years. Some things have definitely gotten better; nonetheless, something has been lost—a way of living, a paradigm of living has been lost. Therefore…, this book. The title, Clueless Christianity, came to clarity as I reflected on our continuing (if not complete) inability to integrate our beliefs, faith practices, and Christian into the ever expanding pluralistic, and often antagonistic, culture around us.