Posts Tagged ‘culture’



   Posted by: pastordiehl    in Uncategorized

If you haven’t heard, today is my birthday. I’ve had so many of them I really can’t recall how old I am. I was born on a Thursday in the wee hours of the morning at the old Souder’s Hospital in Auburn. Dr. C. B. Hathaway delivered me. I don’t remember anything about it, of course. I was the first of six children.

I was born in the second year of the ‘Baby Boom’. Hospitals, schools, highways, stores, and houses all went through huge expansions in my growing years. The ‘Baby Boom’ phenomenon has greatly changed our world, introducing such standards as Howdy Doody, Davy Crockett, Elvis Presley and the Beatles.

Of course this generation has also introduced such norms as mass protests, abortion, free sex, and a huge demand for internet pornography. How will these things affect the next generation raised with these norms? Only time will tell.

The church can either ignore that these changes have occurred, or embrace these as cultural norms for a sick society and work to heal broken lives one soul at a time. I choose to not complain about it, but work for change in individuals. How about you?

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   Posted by: pastordiehl    in Uncategorized

Most of us are familiar with the term “upward mobility.” ‘The Jeffersons’ lived it. If you will remember, the opening line on the old sitcom’s theme song song said, “We’re moving on up to the East Side.” The American Dream espouses the idea that we keep moving upward in society and economy. All of us want to get ahead.

However, Jesus practiced “Downward Mobility”. He emptied Himself of all the glory available to Him in Heaven, and took the form of a ‘slave’ or ‘servant’. He climbed down the ladder to us, and taught us to have the same mindset.

I expect God to bless me and prosper my way. But I expect He will do that as I reach downward to others with greater need. This Saturday. Who will you reach downward to today?

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   Posted by: pastordiehl    in Uncategorized

On mission trips to third world countries, I’ve noticed another cultural difference on the highways. In these other countries driving is a free-for-all. In the Dominican Republic, for example, Japanese mini-buses weave in and out of traffic, a spotter literally hanging out the passenger side door to advise the driver in heavy traffic.

With all this congested traffic, mo-peds, bicycles and pedestrians, not to mention straying dogs and chickens, speeds rarely get above 45 mph, but the danger is constant with such conditions. John and Marge Gudmundsen once rolled their vehicle on an open, paved highway, when they hit a pothole. I’ve witnessed dead goats on the highway in Jordan and potholes 20-30 feet across in Nigeria.

If there’s one thing that sets us apart in America, its law and order. We stop (or nearly so) at stop signs, yield at yield signs, and (usually) don’t cut each other off in traffic. All our roads are striped and well maintained. We are a neat culture.

The one area where we’re not neat is in our philosophy of values. In an attempt to please everybody, we’ve removed all absolutes that might offend. So, the result is that the next generation has no realistic value system to adopt. And the next generation will be radically worse than the first. Let’s be praying for America’s values.


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   Posted by: pastordiehl    in Uncategorized

I’m reading an older (copyright 1966) college textbook entitled History of American Democracy. It is an American History book with an emphasis upon the culture, religion, thought, and early governmental styles in the colonies, and then States. The section I just completed was on the difference between early colonial city culture and that of European city culture.

I noted that one early European writer observed that in America people were more relaxed in their dress, language, and business than their European counterparts. And the next chapter noted that those who had moved into the frontier (away from the coastal cities) were even more relaxed in that culture. I think perhaps that’s why we Americans are the way we are today: anything goes as it relates to language, morals, and work ethic. We have evolved.

The book also noted another major difference: cleanliness. In European cities, people dumped their waste and garbage out the windows into the streets, where disease spread rapidly. In American cities, regular removal of such waste became a norm. As I have traveled into third world countries, I see that same pattern. We are a people of cleanliness and order.

I think that’s a God thing. What do you think about it?

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