Nostalgia And Utopia

I’m sitting here sipping my coffee on a rainy morning, looking at our fantastic Christmas tree, and listening to Bing Crosby sing “White Christmas.” As I listen to Bing croon it’s funny how much my mind gets all nostalgic and thinks back to “simpler times” when it seemed like life was so much easier and everyone was friendlier, and the list just goes on in my head. It’s funny how easily I can either be so romanticized by the past, or so captivated the promise of the future that I check out in the reality of the present. In the book of Ecclesiastes 7:10 King Solomon wisely warned, “Do not say, ‘Why were the old days better than these?’ For it is not wise to ask such questions.”

Recently I was listening to a very thoughtful podcast produced by Christianity Today that was addressing the polarization of political dialogue and one of the commentators made this insightful observation that has stuck with me. They said something to the effect, “The conservative right tends to be in love with and long for nostalgia, while the liberal progressive left tends to be in love with and long for utopia. The problem is that neither the pursuit of nostalgia nor the pursuit of utopia gets us what we most need.” So I’m gonna enjoy my hot coffee, and I’m gonna keep listening to Bing, but I’m going to do it content in this present moment in which God has placed me embracing the fact that “today is the day that the Lord has made, I will rejoice and be glad in it.” (Ps. 118)

About Andy Lewis

Andy is an author, pastor, and musician who lives in Santa Cruz California. Currently he serves as lead pastor at Faith Community Church in Santa Cruz
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