this morning, as i listened to morning edition reporting on the consistent, devaluation of the dollar, the precipitous price of oil and the possibility of chinese companies divesting their american assets and shifting their focus to europe and the euro, i started to wrestle with a strange set of questions. namely, if our country's impending recession devolved into a full blown depression, how would my family respond?
would we exchange our little condo for a more communitarian existence? if we chose the latter option would we live communally in new england, choose to live with extended family or move to the midwest where we could produce more of the food we would need to subsist? in a desperate economy, how would my view of work change? would i be more willing to work a job that met our necessities but was relatively bereft of meaning? how would such circumstances alter my spirituality and my understanding of God? would theological discussions become less of a parlor game and more, or less, essential to a good, beautiful and true existence? would my relationships with friends, family and the other deepen or be distressed?
how do you think a catastrophic economic depression, such as that experienced by my paternal grandparents, who were part of the diaspora that traipsed from oklahoma to california in the 1930s, would effect you and your family?
moreover, if you are a member of the body of Christ, how do you think such circumstances would alter the mission and ministry of the church? as per the church, i suspect that during a depression sermon series on topics such as "how to make friends at work" and "extreme money makeover" would wilt on the side of the road. in addition, the content of your best life now would probably have to be significantly revised. but, i'll leave further discussion of how the church might respond to the comments section.
maybe these musings should be written off as the apocalyptic anxieties of a third generation okie. but maybe considering such questions will help us better understand who we are as individuals and communities as well as what changes we might need to make in order to persevere through the tough economic, political, spiritual and relational times that are bound to come.