Saw a wonderful live open air concert in Cape Town yesterday. The Moreira Project. The swing of black musicians with a mostly black audience brought tears to my eyes.
Before the band came on, a storyteller told a story. (Sermons should be that way). One thing he said struck me:
You are because I am.
I am because you are.
That is Africa, I thought. Community. I only exist because the other exists, and he/she can only live if/because I live.
We have lost that in our western society. People are "objects", "products". Means of exchange.
My partner is there to meet my needs.
The shopkeeper provides me a service.
I want to help my children grow up and be productive.
I support my friend and he/she me.
The politician tries to provide a peaceful and wealthy society.
The congregation pays its minister to deliver a reasonable sermon and be there in times of crisis.
The minister tries to keep his/her congregation on the straight and narrow and hopes to receive a word of encouragement in the process.
But the thought that I can only exist because the other is there? And he/she because I am there?
Paul said "do not be conformed to the thinking of this world".
It seems to be like we have conformed big time.
Try to look at other people differently today.
You cannot "be" without them. and they without you.