I spent some time yesterday reading Chuck DeGroat’s first two posts on his ” The Spirituality of the City” series (Part 1; Part 2; Part 3; Part 4). You gotta go and read them. Very perceptive and helpful. Here are a few quotes to get you interested;
In the city, people love good food, by the way. I’d do well to devote a whole blog to it. And you won’t find the drive-thru on every corner that you see in the suburbs. On a cool day, you’d probably prefer to watch whales while eating breakfast at the Cliff House or Loui’s, while on a warmer day you might do your week’s shopping for fruit and vegetables at the Embarcadero Farmer’s Market. People like to eat and drink, and do it with others here. They work hard, but play hard after it’s all said and done. And while I suspect the preachers and politicians are decrying the evils of the Left Coast and San Francisco, the suburban family is chomping down the fattened calf of processed Big Macs while a San Francisco family is likely dining together, perhaps with friends, on food that isn’t processed, that is locally grown, and probably lacks the chemicals that just accelerated the suburban daughter’s journey into puberty by a year. Which is all to say that the spirituality of the city is a subject worth exploring, and will be one explored in coming installments. . .
. . . For now, it’s worth considering a small thing – that God may not be as cynical as your inflatable-ego talk-show host who has written off the left coast, that He may be so fiercely passionate for His original goodness to flourish that in the places where you least expect it – among the poor, the wounded, the not-so-sexy, the marginalized, and the powerless – (even when these things are bound up in a place, a city) – that He’ll show up and make sure His garden flourishes, not just with blossoming flowers, but with the scents of cuisine representing all nations and tongues, and from the backyard gardens and kitchens of people who in very ordinary ways (sometimes beautiful, sometimes broken) embody God’s vision of the Gardened City.
JR Woodward is hosting a collaborative series on what the Good News means contextually for different cities, I think it would be great to see a follow up series hosted by Chuck DeGroat or JR Woodward on “The Spirituality of the City.” DeGroat has a great start on the SanFran scene.