for those who don't want to just wait it out

like the song says this is a blog for someone who wants to say something (anything) and who's happy to wait and see what time will bring...

Friday, July 28, 2006

The addictiveness of escapisim

I'’ve just come back from the Credo/D'Arts getaway which was good.– It was great to spend time with the students (check out some of the fun photos that will be coming on flickr soon) but to be honest reflections on that will probably wait until I'’ve processed the rest of what's on my mind.

Whether it is by nature or nurture, I am an escapist. It'’s one of the reasons why having holidays on my own holds so much appeal for me. As an adult, I love running away - always have and probably always will. And I don't think that I'm on my
own.

One of the things that I found a little unusual at Perisher was how isolated an area it really can be. When you think about it, all you really have is a big base camp at the bottom of a few mountains, which takes a while to get in and out of. Once there, it seemed to me that there was very much a sense of living for the moment -– almost with the philosophy of consequences be dammed.

On the Friday night I went out to the pub with two guys that I met at the hotel where I was staying, Jimmy and Todd, as well as some of the hotel staff. We went home around 11 and the next morning at breakfast, one of the other hotel staff joined us and told the boys and I what great night we'’d missed out on; everyone getting drunk, picking up whatever girls were there - the usual kind of list. The way this guy was describing what had happened, I really did get the sense that it was out of the ordinary behaviour of what would happen back at home.

People were acting differently because they were getting caught up in the moment and the environment that they were in - so they could either do the things that they normally felt too inhibited to do, or simply wanted to forget about the consequences...

The dictionary defines hedonism as '“the pursuit of or devotion to pleasure, especially the pleasure of the sense'. Psychologically it is the doctrine that holds that behaviour is motivated by the desire for pleasure and the avoidance of pain and that happiness of the self is the sole or chief good in life.

I think that'’s why so many people want to escape. On the surface, it feels good. It'’s addictive. It feels as though there is something better on offer. And as Christians, isn't that what we know to be true? I do - I know that there is something better out there. For myself and for others. I get a glimpse of it when I '‘escape'’ and get to spend time on my own. It'’s a time to re-centre and re-focus on what actually matters. On D'’Arts getaway we looked at Colossians and evangelism. One of the beautifully simple verses that stood out to me was Col 2:6 - “So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live in Him'.

Look at the lyrics for Switchfoot’s song 'Dare you to Move':

"Welcome to the planet
Welcome to existence
Everyone’s here
Everybody’s watching you now
Everybody waits for you now
What happens next?

I dare you to move
I dare you to lift yourself up off the floor
I dare you to move
Like today never happened
Today never happened before

Welcome to the fallout
Welcome to resistance
The tension is here
Between who you are and who you could be
Between who how it is and how it should be

Maybe redemption has stories to tell
Maybe forgiveness is right where you fell
Where can you run to escape from yourself?
Where you gonna go?
Where you gonna go?
Salvation is here."

Thank God for that...

4 Comments:

  • At 12:06 pm, Anonymous chelsea said…

    Beautiful pic.
    Great song.
    And great thoughts Jodi.

    Im a bit of a fan of sole escapism too - definately good to hvae the chance to re-focus like that!

     
  • At 5:50 pm, Anonymous al.x said…

    "Thank God for that..."

    Seconded.

    great photos, too. i trust there are more to come!

     
  • At 3:46 pm, Blogger Phil said…

    Thanks for the thoughts Jodi.

    I really like this song. Thank God that "salvation is here"

     
  • At 7:36 am, Blogger Bronwyn said…

    Great thoughts too...

    ... although interesting to think, then, of John Piper's thesis about Christian hedonism - same word, although uses very differently: He argues that the pursuit of God is both ultimately satisfying (and pleasurable) to us and ultimately glorifying to him.

    I was a skeptic about his thesis until I heard the man speak at the EMA conference in London... He spoke about taking risks in ministry and perseverence. I took home one sentence from his talks that I have been chewing over and challenged by for a month already: "If we do not paint word pictures in big, broad colour (and often!) for our people about the glory of our God and of His ultimate worth - we can never expect people to take risks for Him"...

    I think if I had a bigger vision of 'escaping' to that kind of God, it would be more addictive to me too?

     

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