Over-sized mansions, super-sized French fries, and sport utility vehicles. These are the marks of contemporary America, and we’re proud of them. After all, these are the tangible products of the “American dream,” a concept that promotes ingenuity and hard work as the means to financial abundance. We are a people who believe in certain unalienable rights–life, liberty, and the pursuit of opulence. Wouldn’t questioning the validity of such things be, well, un-American? Actually, a new generation of American faithful is questioning whether such things are inconsistent with the Christian Gospel. The way of Jesus, they say, is focused on others rather than self, on generosity not wealth. While the American dream exalts personal promotion, the Christian Gospel emphasizes downward mobility. We become the greatest when we become the least.

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