I heard an expression this week that I don’t think I’d ever heard before. Monoculture. Sociologically, monoculture is used to describe a moment in time when many subcultures have their attention drawn to the same event and experience it is similar ways together. It is a moment when all of our eyes and conversations are on the same thing.
To me, it is one of those moments when we never forget where we were and what we were doing when we learned of the event. I will never forget hearing of the death of President Kennedy. Even in second grade I knew something significant had happened. Growing up in the 60s, assassinations would become a part of life. Those were troubling times.
I remember where I was when I heard of the Challenger disaster.
And I will never forget where I heard of the death of Kobe Bryant. Church was over, most had left when Danny ran across the Worship Center to let me know the horrible news. And the more we learned, the worse it got. It wasn’t just Kobe. There were nine that perished, including three teenagers. Tragic.
It was a monocultural moment. It’s been like that all week. We all have talked about it all week. The heart of our city is broken, no matter what your opinion of Kobe Bryant. We need to pray that the God of all comfort will draw us near to Him and near to those we love. There have been other tragedies this week, but they are just a blip on our personal the radar. That’s the way it usually is. But not this week. We all need the presence of Jesus and a display of the goodness of God.
These monocultural moments are, thankfully, rare. But in that context, my mind wandered to a still future monocultural event, spoken of by Paul. I’d never thought of it as a monocultural event, but it will be. In Philippians 2, Paul says that there will be a day on which every knee will bow in honor of Jesus. Every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord. That’s pretty monocultural.
A day is coming which will unite all cultures and all peoples of all time. It’ll be unforgettable as we all acknowledge who God is. When the name of Jesus will be spoken, all creation will bow in homage to Him. What a moment.
It is in anticipation of that moment that we continue to work out the details of our salvation. It is because that day is coming that we don’t grumble or complain or argue. Today we adjust our lives to be ready for that day.
There are not many of those monocultural moments that are full of joy and hope and worship. It is usually tragedy which grabs our attention and forces us to share a common experience. I look forward to the day when a declaration of the Lordship of Jesus will unite all hearts and cause us all to bow in humble worship.
Tragedy does help us to keep perspective in life. For a while at least. But we must find our hope in looking forward to that great day when Jesus will be acknowledged as Lord. Let it come soon, dear Savior.