The risk in thinking “worldviewishly” is that we will start to think that the best way to change culture is to analyze it. We will start worldview academies, host worldview seminars, write worldview books. These may have some real value if they help us understand the horizons that our culture shapes, but they cannot substitute for the creation of real cultural goods. And they will subtly tend to produce philosophers rather than plumbers, abstract thinkers instead of artists and artisans. They can create a cultural niche in which “worldview thinkers” are privileged while other kids of culture makers are shunted aside.
But culture is not changed simply by thinking.
-Andy Crouch, Culture Making: Rediscovering Our Creative Calling
This week I’ve been reading Andy Crouch. It has been quite enjoyable. In fact, this is one of the best books I’ve picked up in a while that offers a helpful challenge to Christianity. I’ve been convicted just as much as I have been encouraged. That is the mark of a good book.
I’m analytical and critical. I love to break down a discourse, a book, an event, a newspaper article, a poem, a piece of art, a movie, a play. I enjoy asking questions. And I enjoy sharing my opinions.
But the true desire of me heart, in recent days, has been to undertake a creative, cooperative venture with other like minded people to create something in our world that is helpful, hopeful, and true.
For those of us (myself included) who tend to analyze culture, I hope that Crouch’s words remind us that to think about and analyze our world is not alone sufficient. We have to create. We have to get about the business of bringing about new things. You don’t like the current culture, whether it be national or ecclesial? You’re discouraged by an institutional or communal structure you think is outmoded, outdated, sluggish, apathetic, restrictive, or errant? Quit complaining and get to work.
As Crouch himself has written, “The only way to change culture is to create more of it.“