(Picture: Daniel Oines via Creative Commons)
I’ve talked recently about the myth of normal, how there is a story culture tells us of what a successful, happy, life really is. I’ve spoken about the importance of discovering our own identity and being the unique person we were created to be. And I’ve demonstrated how there are normal myths in each individual area of calling or profession.
But it doesn’t end there either. This myth of normal applies outside of the professional world too. It can come in different areas of our lives.
In some ways this is smaller, but in other ways it’s bigger. Because these are lifestyle choices. Not careers or callings, but habits, perspectives on life which impact how we live. And they are rooted in how we see the world.
Here’s a big example from our culture – sex.
This is a topic we all have an opinion about. Even if we’re not having sex, it’s all around us, all the time and our culture is obsessed by it. And each of us has to choose which story we’re going to follow when it comes to sex.
The general assumption now in our culture is that it’s okay to have sex before marriage, as long as you’re past the age of consent. When we see people are in relationships, it’s generally assumed they are having sex.
And this is the story the vast majority subscribe to when it comes to sex.
Of course, Christian faith has always advocated the view – which I hold – that sex is best when saved for marriage. And fortunately, we live in a culture where we’re free to make our own decisions about how we approach sexuality.
But both views of sex come from bigger stories. The Christian view says sex is a sacred, initmate act between two people, the ultimate place of vulnerability, and is better enjoyed within the context of the marriage covenant, of complete trust, honesty and commitment.
The secular view says we should be free to have sex with whoever we want, whenever we want, however we want, as long as it’s ethical, legal, consensual and doesn’t hurt anyone. It comes from the view that we make our own choices and we should be able to have sex with whoever we want, whenever we want, within the obvious boundaries of ethics, morality and law.
But going deeper, it actually comes from a view of the world which says it’s all about us.
Our enjoyment, our good, comes before anything else. And all the good things should be enjoyed now. Anything which restricts our decisions, or tells us to live in a way we’re not comfortable with, is limiting. We make our own decisions, and if it feels good and it’s legal and morally good, then we should be free to do it.
Which of course, is a worldview. The worldview which perpetuates throughout western culture, which people think is ‘normal’.
But hold on. Where did we get this from? Where did we read this? Who told us this?
Because people get asked this and say ‘well that’s just how it is’, but that’s not true. Just because there’s no holy texts, doesn’t mean that this isn’t a story which someone has decided is the best story for our culture.
We think we’re free. Each worldview has a view of ‘true freedom’, and each one thinks the opposing ones freedoms are actually boundaries – including the area of sex.
But are we?
When did we choose our worldview? Did we decide on our own? If so, when? (you can tweet that here)
If we think we did decide on our own, are we really sure?
Everyone has a worldview, and I’m not here to preach mine at anyone. But I know where I heard it first, and I know I’ve made a conscious, public, decision to follow it. And at it’s best, it impacts the way I see and interact with everything and everyone.
So what worldview do you follow? Why do you follow it? And where did it come from?
Because I can tell you now, it came from somewhere. You didn’t come up with it by yourself. Our culture does a good job of making us think we came up with our own worldview – but it’s a complete lie.
We need to examine our worldview, the story we currently live by. And we need to make a conscious, intentional choice about what values are important to us, and how we see the world, which will impact our lives moving forward.
Are you with me?
What’s your worldview?
Where did you hear it first – do you remember?
What would it be like to make a conscious decision about your worldview?
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