Three Peas in a Pod

IN A RECENT POST on his blog Faith in Context entitled, “Christians As Pop Culture Wanna-Bes,” Monte Sahlin adds his thoughts to those of writer Loren Seibold, on the topic of how we Christians should relate to the culture—the “world”—around us.

Monte describes two typical Christian responses:

“Unfortunately, most Christian responses to the current cultural context fall into two categories: (1) putting ‘head in sand,’ ignoring contemporary culture or reacting against it in such sweeping tones as to disconnect from society and live in a Christian bubble, or (2) behave like ‘wanna-be’s.’”

But Monte goes on to propose a third alternative that he calls “culturally creative engagement”—finding ways to positively impact the society around us.

This discussion reminded me of an illustration I heard years ago, which I included in a chapter as—a couple of years ago—I was writing the centennial history for Loma Linda University Adventist Health Sciences Center, entitled Railway to the Moon:

Three peas lived happily in a pod. Came the day, however, when the pod opened slightly to reveal the rich brown soil below. One pea shrank back in alarm. “The soil is dirty,” said Pea No. 1. “We’re safe here in our pod. We’re green—and should stay as far away from the brown soil as possible.”

The second pea had other ideas. Feeling restricted by the pod and odd being green while surrounded by so much brown, No. 2 quickly wriggled free of the pod and rolled around in the soil to get as brown as possible—as quickly as possible.

Pea No. 3 surveyed the soil and said, “You know, we’re all green. The soil is brown. Green is just the color the soil needs to see more of.” And with that, Pea No. 3 rolled onto the soil and shared its “green-ness” with the brown earth.

Christians sometimes struggle in relating to the world around them. Some separate themselves as far as possible from “the world” so it can’t soil them. Others don’t like to be so different—as different as green is from brown—and they plunge into the world so they won’t stand out. Finally, some Christians step boldly into the world to share their true colors and make the brown world a greener place.


2 responses to this post.

  1. For truth about what the Bible says regarding “dirty foods” read Eric W. King’s article at:


  2. I’ve approved your comment here, Eric, but should point out that it is off-topic. My post is on faith-sharing…your link is on diet and vegetarianism. I welcome all comments, but it’s appreciated if they can be focused on the topic posted.


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