The culture that spawned the “Me Generation” and the ideals of “looking out for number one,” has become part of everything we know. We applaud individualism and striving to find our personal best, and much of the time, it’s a really good thing. A part of me wonders though, if we can actually over-do a good thing. Can we get to the place where we prize one individual’s efforts or ideas so much, we forget about the common good? Can we treat every idea, even if we disagree with it, as okay simply because we want everyone to feel good? What happens then to any understanding of basic right and wrong? 

Our current culture feels a lot like the Old Testament description of the days that followed Joshua. Joshua became the leader of Israel in the Promised Land after the death of Moses. After Joshua died, there were generations that did not know about God because no one told God’s stories, and the people did what they thought was right in their own eyes. Chances are, that didn’t mean everyone was loving their neighbor as themselves.  

Personally, I can’t help wondering then, if we are doing a disservice to ourselves and to our families and our communities when we each march to a different drummer and leave everyone else behind? For those of us who believe God had a plan when He started this planet spinning, we might recall that this whole individualistic desire is what changed everything from the get-go. God had built a paradise, and the first two inhabitants of that world loved it until they decided to not do things God’s way. Given the chance to simply go after the forbidden fruit, they did so. They wanted to do things their way, even though they knew God firsthand.  Now we continually choose between doing things our way, or God’s way.  Maybe that helps us recognize how easily paradise was lost. 

God’s way is always about relationships. It’s not just me living in a world I created all by myself. It’s me living in a community, a place where people help each other, love one another, and find ways to make things better all together. Don’t misunderstand. I am all about good leaders, and people who open the door for others to see new possibilities. I just question where it ends if every individual is the priority, and nobody has a sense that we’re all in this together. 

I can respect your way, applaud your way, even admire your way, but I want you to like my way too.  After all, “I’m okay, you’re okay.” Your way, or my way though, can’t win over God’s way. I suspect that if God was to speak to us directly, He might ask, “So how’s that ‘going your own way’ thing working for you?”

One peek at the news and we can find the answer.