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Deep in the Burbs

I’ve been wrestling with the first sermon in our new series A Deep Life all day. My problem is that I have SO MUCH to say that I’m afraid a) I will overwhelm people, and b) it will go too long. I am so excited about this series, because it hits the core of my passion. How we can have a deep life in the U.S. Middle Class Suburban context? This was, in fact, what my PhD dissertation was all about. I called it Deep in the Burbs. Check it out here if you want to go deep about going deep (see what I did there).

One of the struggles we have in our slice of society is the frenetic pace in which we run. Here is an excerpt from a previous post that captures the essence of our experience.

Our ninth grade confirmation students are early adolescent, middle class, suburbanites who live in a society that tells them, “You are the master of your own destiny. If you feel it, it’s true. If you work hard enough, you can be anything you want to be, because you deserve it.”

They live in a middle class world where they have enough money to have access to more information than any generation that has ever lived…combined…in the palm of their hand. They feel pressure to be involved in as many activities as possible in order to achieve as many merits as possible so that they can get scholarships to go to the college they want so they can be assured to get a job that will allow them to sustain their upwardly mobile suburban lifestyle and move further up the ladder than their parents (I hope that sentence made you tired).

They live in a suburban world where, most likely, both parents work and they have to be driven anywhere they want to go. That means parents are either a perpetual taxi service, constantly moving from one event to another, or the hormonal teen is left alone for long periods of time with access to internet and various mature media.

In other words, it is very challenging to be an adolescent, middle-class, suburbanite. Additionally, the story of the Bible seems to be a still small voice in a very loud culture that screams a different song.

How can we learn to slow down, and breathe deeply in the presence of God? What are your challenges in seeking A Deep Life?

 

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