Monday, July 24, 2006

No. 16: Infrastructure

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I have been thinking about infrastructure. Infrastructure is a common enough word. We hear it from time to time referencing our nation's roads and bridges, our rail systems, our communication and power-lines, our underground water and sewer systems, and our public institutions such as schools, post offices, libraries, hospitals, and even prisons.

Technically, the word “infrastructure” refers to an underlying base, foundation, or even a framework. Many types of infrastructures exist. Among them are military infrastructures, financial infrastructures, and political infrastructures. Individual churches, along with para-church ministries like Focus on the Family are, in practical terms, the infrastructure of the larger body of Christ. A building’s framework can also be referred to as an infrastructure. Essentially, an infrastructure is that which lends support to something larger than itself.

Since the early 1970's, I have worked in the "infrastructure" industry. Plans for water and sewer lines, drainage systems, roads, bridges, and even underground electrical systems have graced my desk for many years. I am very familiar with infrastructure, and I understand that without it our world would be grossly underdeveloped and likely dysfunctional.

But the word "infrastructure" somehow seems out of place when we discuss the themes found in this kind of newsletter—a publication devoted to Biblical matters such as theology, creeds, kingdoms, and doctrine.

Because I work in the infrastructure industry, I think about infrastructure almost every day. And I can’t help but make a connection between the infrastructure in our physical world, and the “infrastructure” of our thought-processes.

Let us step back just a moment and consider if the word "infrastructure" might have a place in our conversation about developing sound, Biblical thinking and a clear-headed Judeo-Christian Worldview. Those things are, after all, the mission of this weekly newsletter.

In the upper right hand corner above, in the heading of this newsletter, are the words “As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he.” Our thought life is critical. The way we think determines who we are—at least to a very large degree. And if our thoughts about important things are out of sync with reality, then we ourselves too, will be out of sync.

Our theology, our doctrine, and the creeds to which we hold, are very much like an internal infrastructure, providing support and stability to our lives. Even as our cities and towns require underground utilities and public institutions for support, so we humans require Truth to be rooted internally within our minds and our consciences for us to live out our lives in a sound and God-pleasing way.

With a right-minded, internal, Truth-rooted, Biblical infrastructure, we can expect to possess good mental and spiritual health and a well-rounded vitality. This is the life God intended us to live.


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