Thursday, December 29, 2011

More on The Troubles With Modern Life


America is radically changing, I am old enough to remember when things were far, far different, and most of the changes are not positive ones. The last 5 years, I have seen even an acceleration of these changes. I wonder if anyone else is noticing or even cares?

Sure we have lots of new shiny toys, Ipods and fancy IPads, and Droids [are these names right?], and basically what amounts to fancy cell phones that one can go on the internet with, but has anyone asked why the power still goes out like it's the 1930's everytime there is an ice storm, hurricane or a bit of a high wind? That is just one way, this seems to be the era of empty toys and style over substance on the material level. Even the woefully limited gas power generators, are only for the wealthy or the extreme well-off prepper who has a 100 gallon gas tank in his own yard. Tons of shiny toys for the populace, but no real changes to the infrastructure which seems to be collapsing around us in America and just more wasted frenzy.

Sometimes I feel like everything is whizzing by me and that includes people who are becoming even more out of touch, and busy and it's like personal "production" and work is everything. It can hurt to be shunted aside so often, that person asks, "why try anymore"? Thankfully I find people who think like I do out there, who are not entranced by it all. To be frank, sometimes I just want to say, "Look, they want you to be a hamster on a spinning wheel because it keeps you from thinking too much!" 

Has anyone sat down and wondered about where all the "we need to brag about being busy" stuff came from where everyone is busy spinning on the hamster wheel? No one ever slows down anymore. Where is the "dancing as fast as we can" ethos coming from? Where everyone feels they need to be on the move every second. Some of us can't keep up and watch it all, rather dumbfounded. I understand people having long work hours to contend with, but does anyone ever stop up look around and think, "Hey what I am doing?"

I believe this stuff has affected relationships, I talked about this issue before in this blog article: "Social Disconnection Vs. Loving One Another". What are all the broken connections doing to people? Lately I have thought of this, it is leading to a growing callousness. Even the Christian world, seems to be just as career and success driven. What happens to people when they only see the back end of others, or they realize in the busy competitive parade, that they can easily be 'replaced' and are seen as disposable people? Ever been a disposable person yourself? Once that happens, it can alter a person's view of the world quite a bit. Some of us come to God where He is our everything for a reason.

That too, I will warn people while I have had close friendships over the internet, some friendships lasting for over 10 years, formed long distance, I have found myself pondering the reality that you really cannot know someone the same way, you do online as you do in person. One thing write a blog like this one, and there are folks who do come out of the woodwork, and they do not all have your best interests at heart even while they may pretend to in the beginning. Sometimes it can even be scary, how so many will approach you seeming to be "friendly" in the email box,  but you realize something is not right. Hey I am one to be blunt, I am tired of liars. A few on there are not, but too many are.

Even thinking about those modern evangelical books, Platt's and Chan's telling Christians to "go save the world", I think about this stuff. Friend goes to another megachurch friend, "Can you help me move next weekend, no sorry I have to go to Haiti, Yemen, [name other distant third world nation here] next week!". It looks like everyone is busy filling their resume's even in Christian world. Everything is about running all over the place. I saw this in the Catholic and mainline church world, where good women, who were well meaning, somehow seemed to think they had to work their fingers to the bone, and be busy every second, to please God. Even think about Mary and Martha here, Martha is the one running around getting upset because Mary isn't staying as busy:

 Luke 10:38Now it came to pass, as they went, that he entered into a certain village: and a certain woman named Martha received him into her house. 

39And she had a sister called Mary, which also sat at Jesus' feet, and heard his word.

40But Martha was cumbered about much serving, and came to him, and said, Lord, dost thou not care that my sister hath left me to serve alone? bid her therefore that she help me.

41And Jesus answered and said unto her, Martha, Martha, thou art careful and troubled about many things:

42But one thing is needful: and Mary hath chosen that good part, which shall not be taken away from her.

I'd rather be Mary.

One other thing in modern life, and one way they have kept everyone busy, distracted and overwhelmed is imposing impossible standards. Many people relay to me, how they feel like nothing is ever good enough, and live their lives under endless rules, and imposing bosses at the workplace. I have seen this change too, where instead of just showing up for an honest day of labor, people are buried in rules. The tyranny of the bean counters is growing. We see this even at the governmental level too as they impose so many news laws and rules, everyone can barely keep up. Everyone wants to be perfect by standards by other people, forgetting God's standards and seeing life as nothing but a long list of rules, and expecting everyone to be "perfect". False religions all impose impossible rules that wear people down but so does the modern "religion" of success and being of this world.

1 Corinthians 3:19
For the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God. For it is written, He taketh the wise in their own craftiness.

The "perfection" pressures ranges from the cosmetic and plastic surgery world, where "perfect bodies" are demanded especially as a huge pressure on women. Then there are the huge pressures to have "professional" level standards imposed everywhere. Here others determine what is acceptable and not acceptable. Even with this blog, there are those who seem to think unless it is written to the same level as someone with a hired staff, it has no place. I just say, "Hey give it a rest with the impossible standards!" Normal people, cast to the fringes of society while only the most 'successful' [or read here most conformist] need apply!

Some people barely feel free to live their lives, as the societal straitjackets grow tighter and tighter. There are many people out there, who even under these pressures do not feel they can do "good" enough and so do not even try. It is simply another way to pound the round pegs into the square holes and it works effectively to suppress people. Many barely feel like they can step out of the house, nowadays, leaving everything to the supposed EXPERTS. Well, I know I don't have 3 Phds behind my name, and admit to my failings. This isn't anything that is new to me.

2 Corinthians 12:9

And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.

What if I told you, that these changes in society are horrifying me, like they have thrown everything that is important in life, into a giant pit, and threw a match on it and burned it all up and most do not even care. I see a land of  people, who insist on everyone being the same, and who beat others down, even with a smile on their face. They are enticed with their toys, delusional dreams and buying into all the new standards without questioning any of it.

Perhaps all of those who age grieve over what is being lost, but when you see everything you value, being destroyed and the suffering this causes to so many, it does give you a different view of things. Add to that the people who are running themselves ragged to fit impossible standards, this has included an older lady I know who exercises 6 hours a day at the Y, to prove some kind of odd discipline to the world to people who do not even have any friends, yes they are out there, because success comes before anything else.

Americans are not free, well we enjoyed more freedom then many for years but this is becoming one of the most conformist societies ever in world history. If you don't measure up, and we see the disenfranchised and poor out there too, you are cast adrift as an "outcast"! Hey embrace your "outcast" status. If you are the REAL DEAL, that is what you will be. I'd rather keep company with those who have hearts for God, rather then those who want to be perfect by the world's standards and impress others.

We are becoming an oppressive society,[note about link, I do not agree with author on every matter ] you think the oppression is to just to be applied to your body, and physical controls via the police state, cameras, surveillance, airport searches? No it's being applied to your MIND as well and people far smarter then you, are working heavily to influence you and your loved ones.  Are you allowing yourself to be changed by this world, or are you allowing the Holy Spirit to change you?

Rom 12:2    And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what [is] that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.

Is anyone else here thinking about the changes in modern life, and how it's all about control and imposing impossible standards to oppress people? God help me in dealing with and watching this whole farce.


news4themasses said...

Great Post! Well, I admit I do have a Droid! but none of the Ipad/pod stuff! I have a cheap Mp3 player I do use on my runs. I guess I could run without it but I admit, that would be weird! Yes I agree our society is vastly becoming a wasteland of "Everybody is the same" and they love it so. Teenagers don't know what the word "Privacy" means. I loathe Walmart because it's so oppressive, you can't go in there without being watched from the parking lot to the checkout, and you can't go anywhere else because it's so cheap if you go to a 'local' place you're throwing your money away, it's demonic to me! No one gets it. Few do anyway. We are being bombarded constantly to conform. Especially in the Church body. No one can discern God's word unless they've had seminary or some psuedo-Institute that has taught them how to use a Strong's! lol. Ah, the Holy Spirit is obsolete according to all these Bible Scholar's and Bible Elites I guess. Not for me, I enjoy my stupidity at times, it's refreshing to know that I'm not a completed work, that I have no one else to lean on save Christ Jesus, for lo I am without technical support, researchers, and editors! But my Lord still loves me! Elijah was promised that some had not bowed to Baal, let us take comfort that there are those out there who are suffering as we are! Romans 8:22-23

22 For we know that the whole creation groans and suffers the pains of childbirth together until now. 23 And not only this, but also we ourselves, having the first fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our body.

reaching4truth said...

"The last 5 years, I have seen even an acceleration of these changes. I wonder if anyone else is noticing or even cares?" YES! YES! I see it too, and it grips me.

"What are all the broken connections doing to people? Lately I have thought of this, it is leading to a growing callousness." -- YESSS!! Very much so. And so saddened by it.

BB, everything you have touched on here is something I too am gripped by and grieve over the reality of. We are a vastly changing society, and that goes for what's going on with the churches as well.

You both had me crying at points, BB -- you and news4themasses. Cathartic tears, tears of appreciation at the timely scripture passages. Your thoughts very much mirror my own. Great post.

Abbey said...

I feel the same sadness and sense of loss as you Bible Believer. I would rather be Mary instead of Martha too.

The world has changed so much and continues at breathtaking speed. Most people are oblivious to the changes because they're too preoccupied with themselves and things. Those inside and outside the Church have become blind. Many people are obsessed with acquiring the latest gadgets, vacations, new cars, big houses, partying and having a good time and making lots of money to support their lavish lifestyles whether they can afford it or not. We live in the most materialistic generation ever. The lack of morals and selfishness is growing. The Church is apostate but so few notice it. Our freedoms are vanishing as the world spins towards a one world government and religion.

Romans 8:22-23 are appropriate verses news4themasses. I will add:

Psalm 73:25-26
Whom have I in heaven but thee? and there is none upon earth that I desire beside thee. My flesh and my heart faileth: but God is the strength of my heart, and my portion for ever.

Bible Believer said...

Hi News4themasses, hey I have some modern gadgets too well like this computer LOL I am glad you see our society too the same way, where being the same is the greatest goal and yes they all adore it. I really feel for the teenagers where privacy is something they probably never have experienced and well with some of the schools run like police state camps, they do not even considering having any rights either. I understand people having to shop at Walmart, especially in small towns where there is little other choice, and not everyone can afford driving an hour or two to a big city, but I try to avoid Walmart myself but have a few other options. It is oppressive, but then one notices they got endless cameras on people in any store of note, its kind of creepy, those 360 degree round cameras that stick down from the ceiling. I believe the Wal-mart plan was to destroy local commerce and local ties between merchants who often lived in the community and well it worked. I always wondered if those would be the *food distribution* centers later on if you get my drift. China-Mart also helped to serve to affect the US economy. I try to "shop local" and then go up dependent on need.

You are right we are being bombarded to conform all the time. Those who don't are called crazy, and all sorts of the names. The psychological and societal pressures are immense. Have the perfect house, body, and *think the right thoughts* [right thoughts do not include being a Bible Christian] The churches all want the conformity too influencing the pastors along every modern fad and to demand a bunch of compliant followers after all their "leadership" classes. Yes, people have been fooled into thinking only the EXPERTS can discern or understand God's Word. You are right to point out the role of the Holy Spirit. LOL enjoy simplicity, and not being one of those who are "ever learning" and never coming to the truth. I know I am not some genius, or mega-academic. Who would want to be? There are so few of those who have been allowed into the mainstream doors who are allowed to think out of the box anyway. I agree the Lord still loves me too, and while we may make our mistakes, or still have a lot to learn, I believe God will reward our faith in Him and refusal to bow to Baal. Thanks for that verse :)

Bible Believer said...

Thanks reaching4truth. I am glad you see and discern what I am talking about. The last 5 years even has been watching the previously unacceptable become acceptable. That alone has been bad enough. Sometimes I am crying even before writing, or thinking about these things. Even the changes and watching where things are going is deeply disturbing. I believe God understands the grief.

Matt 5:4 Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted.

I am saddened too by the broken callousness and rest, so will pray for you too.

Bible Believer said...

Hi Abbey, thanks for your understanding words too. Doing this blog entry has helped me seeing that there are other people out there too who are feeling the same way, with the sadness and sense of loss. I think so many things are changing to the worse too, and people you are right are oblivious to the changes. Some are merely overworked and kept like spinning top and remain ignorant that way but many are too preoccupied with themselves and the shiny toys and materialism. You would think the growing economic damage would wake more people up, where the shiny toys, and fancy lifestyles are going the way of the dinosaurs, but even there, they take more refuge in the entertainment of this world, its music and other false messages. The church has become blind. I would think even visiting some, how can people not see what is going on here and yes many still remain obessed with acquiring all the latest goodies. This society is becoming more narcissistic [well that is another name for selfishness, cold and corrupt. People can even see that things from the top are run in full corruption. It makes you wonder how does that influence the children growing up watching it all? None care about freedom, so very few. I think even of my own experiences warning about NDAA, very very few cared. Most wanted me to be quiet. That is one thing too, how so many do not want to face reality, as if the entire country is in one delusional dream, they do not want their precious bubbles burst. The one world gov't definitely is being set up and one world religion too.

Thanks for that Bible verse, I'll add this one as well.

Philipians 3:8

Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ,

Sixpence Never the Richer said...

I understand where you are coming from BB. I am so sick of the loneliness that is going on now. I hear people on social networking sites say things like "oh, I have...friends on my facebook" when really all the "friends" are strangers that they barely know. All of these new sites and gadgets may seem like innocent fun but really, I think that they are just distractions that move people further apart.

Anonymous said...

I feel like this for a few months before and after Christmas too. Probably because this holiday forces you to examine your opinion on the materialistic side of the holiday. My son decided to celebrate a made up on TV (I think Seinfeld) holiday called "Festivus" in rebellion to Christmas and all its' evil, and ended up burning his lawn during "the feats of strength".

"Stuff and things", have always been in the Devils tool box, in every generation, through all history, beginning at the beginning.

And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat. (Genesis 3:6)

Consider also Matt 19:23-30 and how Peter responds, kind of reminds me of something.

Then answered Peter and said unto him, Behold, we have forsaken all, and followed thee; what shall we have therefore? (Matthew 19:27)

How much have "I" really forsaken to follow Christ? The problem with counting the cost of the loss, is a failure to see the reality and blessing of the gain.

And every one that hath forsaken houses, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my name's sake, shall receive an hundredfold, and shall inherit everlasting life. But many that are first shall be last; and the last shall be first. (Matthew 19:29-30)

If I am focused on my loss or gain, I am still focused on me.

Bible Believer said...

Ah me too Sixpence. I have suffered some grief from losing communities and people I have cared about. Families all moved hundreds and thousands of miles away from each other, and everyone is in a different state and town, and it's just not the same ways things used to be. So many now wondering around and move from job to job and city to city as they get laid off and can't even count on having people who know them around. When people hit their middle years and realize they in the position of making friends among strangers, it doesn't get easier, it gets harder far harder. Today you just see everyone come and go, like human beings treating each other as disposable and "another bus will come by". Today people do not even seem to "attach" to others in the same way. I agree about Facebook, it is a bunch of strangers. Some seem to see that as a replacement for real interaction, it isn't. I am running into a lot of lonely people who are feeling isolated, and well, this society is isolating people more and more, the toys are helping, the busy-ness is helping and you are right its all distractions to move people further apart. I even brought some of this up to family member why are we all living so far from each other, some struggling, some not, and whose idea was this? They thought I was nuts. They do not see it the same way not at all. All I know is I used to see how the world operated years ago, and it was far better. While I know I use technology trying to use it for good, for this blog and more, a lot of it is being used for evil and is not so innocent and they definitely have helped entrance the populace with it.

Bible Believer said...

Hi Anon,

Yes, I am glad you relate, watching people run about, well things are speeded up even more crazily during the "holiday" season, which I know helped lead me to write this article. Yes it is interesting to examine the materialistic side of the holiday. One thing I never liked about Christmas is the focus on material things and how it actually entices children to get more "greedy" for what "santa" is going to bring them. It is kind of worrisome how the holiday does focus so much on this area. Watching the shopaholics go at it, and realizing at the same time the collapse of the overall economy, it was kind of even sadder to be an observer this year. Yes there is some kind of odd Festivus movement out there for people to "rebel" against Christmas.

Well even secularists and non-believers are getting burnt out. Just google "I hate Christmas" sometime.

I have warned AGAINST Christmas on this blog.

I agree the devil has always used lust for the things of this world to dissuade mankind.

Mar 4:19 And the cares of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, and the lusts of other things entering in, choke the word, and it becometh unfruitful.
Thanks for that verse from Peter....

and the reminder of the rest.

I agree about being focused on the losses or gains of this world.