Our Families’ Identities are Being Shaped Around Consumerism

I’m excited about today’s topic, because it’s one that I deeply, deeply care about. And it’s kind of this competition, or this battle, or kind of this historical moment we had 100 or 200 years ago, where we went from a production-based society, or a contributing-based society, to a consumer-based society, and the huge ramifications that’s had with the family. Because we don’t even realize, if you’re listening as a family in the West, in America, then I guarantee 99% of us don’t realize that we actually are living and having our family’s identity shaped around how we consume things together. And that is a little antithetical to a team, because teams don’t consume teams; teams build, teams contribute, teams play in the game, teams serve, teams have a mission. But yeah, Jeremy, what would you say about this, or how do you want to kind of unpack this one?

Yeah. So I started thinking about this; I was reading this book “Kingdom Family,” by Trevecca Okholm, and she said this quote, which really struck me. She said, “Most suburban and urban families in our culture no longer have a need or means of producing anything together. And their sole relational function is based on what they consume together. So their conversations, and their actions, are reduced to planning for the next purchase, the next vacation, the next entertainment event, rather than actually working towards and accomplishing a project.” And so this is a big problem, is that we don’t have anything that we actually try to accomplish together just naturally, and it takes a lot of leadership to come out.

And the way you lead your family out of consumerism is one assignment at a time. You take on a mission that requires every member of the family to contribute, and then you lead your family into that mission through various assignments. I’m really excited about this, by the way, because our whole month of August in the Homeroom, our online membership program, is to help families lead their family teams on assignments. And so what we’re doing is walking each person, each family, through a various set of questions to try to find assignments that match their mission. Questions like, what kind of gets under your skin? What are you angry about? What needs are just around you, on your street, in your extended family? Or what has God woven into your family story? Are there places, are their needs, are there stories that your family carries that represent a part of your family’s mission that you guys can take on a specific assignment?

But what’s really challenging, you guys, is you have to break these down into specific projects; this is what the author of this book is really saying, and I completely agree, because it’s not going to be… Somebody is not going to hand you a program that just fits your particular unique family and says, “Hey, this is how your family can really do something productive, instead of just consume.” It’s going to take a little bit of thought, a little bit of prayer, a little bit of leadership and vision, but it can really be done well. And so we’d highly recommend it, because the alternative, you guys, is that we continue to become a consumption group. And that is not how you build a team on mission. A team on mission has to score. A team on mission has to complete projects. A team on mission, or a family, must be fruitful. That’s what we were designed to do in Genesis 1. And so how do we kind of move from this consumer mentality to a production mentality? We have to become fruitful through taking on these kinds of assignments.

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