Throughout this week we’ll be looking at the list of American Values as identified by L. Robert Kohls in “The Values Americans Live By.” (Lehigh University –Career and Profession Development) Here are the next couple of values. The invitation is “to think about these things.”
Time and its Control: Time is, for the average American, of utmost importance. To the foreign visitor, Americans seem to be more concerned with getting things accomplished on time (according to a predetermined schedule) than they are with developing deep interpersonal relations. Schedules, for the American, are meant to be planned and then followed in the smallest detail. It may seem to you that most Americans are completely controlled by the little machines they wear on their wrists, cutting their discussions off abruptly to make it to their next appointment on time. Time is so valued in America, because by considering time to be important one can clearly accomplish more than if one “wastes” time and does not keep busy. This philosophy has proven its worth. It has enabled Americans to be extremely productive, and productivity itself is highly valued in the United States. Many American proverbs stress the value in guarding our time, using it wisely, setting and working toward specific goals, and even expending our time and energy today so that the fruits of our labor may be enjoy at a later time.
Equality/Egalitarianism: Equality is, for Americans, one of their most cherished values. This concept is so important for Americans that they have even given it a religious basis. They say all people have been “created equal.” Most Americans believe that God views all humans alike without regard to intelligence, physical condition or economic status. In secular terms this belief is translated into the assertion that all people have an equal opportunity to succeed in life. Americans differ in opinion about how to make this ideal into a reality. Yet virtually all agree that equality is an important civic and social goal. The equality concept often makes Americans seem strange to foreign visitors. Americans have an aversion to treating people of high position in a deferential manner, and conversely, often treat lower class people as if they were very important.
Scripture Reading: Galatians 5:22-23
“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance,
kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.
Against such things there is no law.”
Do you agree that Time and its Control and Equality/Egalitarianism are American values? If so why? If not why not?
What is the difference between a list of values and the Fruit
of the Spirit?
In what ways do you show kindness?
Holy God, you created us in your image after your likeness.
Help me to see others in the way you see them. May my
spirit be filled with your presence. Amen.
To view previous readings click HERE