A beautiful painting by Jon McNaughton. View his work here.
This article was originally published on The Underground, a Christian website I write for. To view that article click here. The version on this blog is the uncut writer's version. Thanks!
“The American Dream is that dream of a land in which life should be better and richer and fuller for everyone, with opportunity for each according to ability or achievement. It is a difficult dream for the European upper classes to interpret adequately, and too many of us ourselves have grown weary and mistrustful of it. It is not a dream of motor cars and high wages merely, but a dream of social order in which each man and each woman shall be able to attain to the fullest stature of which they are innately capable, and be recognized by others for what they are, regardless of the fortuitous circumstances of birth or position.”― James Truslow Adams, The Epic of America
Is the American dream a thing of the past? According to an article published by CNN Money, Americans think so. "6 in 10 people who responded to CNNMoney's American Dream Poll, conducted by ORC International, they feel the dream -- however they define it -- is out of reach."
Read the full Article here.
Christians have certainly embraced it, especially from the 1950s until today. I was a product of it, father was a teacher, my mother was a nurse. I lived in the suburbs of a conservative Catholic community in rural Wisconsin. I was middle class all the way. But it didn't yield exactly what might've been expected.
If the financial corruption and mega-corporate empires destroyed the pursuit of happiness, and our leaders have allowed for the dismantling of liberty, what does that leave remaining from Thomas Jefferson's description of human rights? Life. But once again, I must break your heart. We no longer have the right to life. A wholesale genocide exists in our country, quietly ignored and written off. That genocide has lead to the slaughter of over 56 million children. That genocide is called abortion. Fifty six million people already worldwide have been denied their right to life. Yes, I'm afraid the news is that the conventionally understood American dream is effectively dead.
But that is not necessarily a reason for despair in the heart of the Christian.
C.S. Lewis wrote in Mere Christianity: “Enemy-occupied territory---that is what this world is. Christianity is the story of how the rightful king has landed, you might say landed in disguise, and is calling us to take part in a great campaign of sabotage.”The American dream is not synonymous with the Christian dream. The American dream has often been a blessing to Christianity, and perhaps just as often a curse. But they are not one in the same. In stark contrast to the American dream, the Christian dream is the great hope of the redemption of all things. We dream, hope, and wait eagerly for the redemption of our bodies which our now twisted by sin. We wait also for the redemption of the Earth itself from it's current broken state, to a perfect state of harmonious natural existence. And most importantly, we wait for the returning of our blessed Lord Jesus Christ and his eternal rule in the perfect government and economic system, the one where Jesus Christ is undisputed sovereign Lord of the Universe, and we live under his gentle loving care in a city full of those saved from destruction and the chaotic failed systems of this fallen world.