(Photo by Selma Komisky)
Confessions of a Indie Girl
By Sarah Komisky
In my late teens and early twenties, I went through a season of being all about the indie lifestyle. As a super philanthropist and humanitarian with a razor haircut and Urban Outfitters indie garb, I was eager to support all things independent as well as all things charity based. This also meant I opted for handcrafted goods, ate purple mush regularly, and was adamant to use a veggie wash on all my produce. Since going green was my thing, I researched the ways I could conserve energy,
enjoy clean eating, buy eco-friendly products and essentially save the planet. But I was also passionate about saving third world countries and ending genocide, willing to finically support various organizations who gave to a seemingly good cause. Although I had always loved things
that did not fit within the mainstream culture in fashion, music, films, etc., I had now adopted the philosophy of life that came with it.
Steeped in the indie culture, I advocated for these causes. I thought I was cooler than the mainstream masses. Now there is absolutely nothing wrong with wanting to be healthy, liking things that are different, desiring to give, or even wanting to help make the planet a little nicer. The problem is when we adopt a lifestyle where other causes overshadow Jesus Christ and are elevated into the priority slots in life. When the endeavor becomes all-consuming, when you pour your funds excessively to causes that might not be your best investment, when what you’re doing is done because it’s “cool,” when you start to develop an elitist mentality, and when you start to believe that changing the planet depends on only you, then something is wrong.
An incident that God used to make we re-think the indie lifestyle and philosophies I adopted was when I ran into a girl who was also a social activist advocating to save the whales. My mom (whom I was with at the time) got into a conversation with this girl and said, “that’s so great you want to help save the whales, but do you know who created the whales?” The statement got me thinking. I was spending so much energy trying to save the world (animals, plants, people, and the earth), that I lost sight of the main cause worth fighting for – the gospel. Also, when my main focus became saving the planet versus following God, other causes, whether I realized it or not, became more important.
Back in the book of Genesis in the Bible, Adam and Eve brought sin into the world when they ate of the fruit God told them not to eat because He knew it would cause them harm. This singular choice affected the planet as a whole, and creation was corrupted through the ages. Romans 8:20-25 puts it this way:
Against its will, all creation was subjected to God’s curse. But with eager hope, the creation looks forward to the day when it will join God’s children in glorious freedom from death and decay. For we know that all creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time. And we believers also groan, even though we have the Holy Spirit within us as a foretaste of future glory, for we long for our bodies to be released from sin and suffering. We, too, wait with eager hope for the day when God will give us our full rights as his adopted children, including the new bodies he has promised us. We were given this hope when we were saved. (If we already have something, we don’t need to hope for it. But if we look forward to something we don’t yet have, we must wait patiently and confidently).
This means that creation is subjected to sin and with that comes decay. All creation, including humanity, decays. This gives way to pollution, global warming, deterioration, disease, illness, old age, and anything that has to do with the decline of creation as a whole. When I placed my
hope in myself to save the planet and reverse the curse at hand, I believed a lie. I myself cannot change the course creation is on, that is not my job. It’s God’s as Creator to restore all of creation as He intended it to be. That’s my hope! AND, as Christians, we believe God will create a new heaven and new earth at His return!
While we as Christians wait for that to occur, I don’t have to have an “I don’t care attitude” about creation. I can do my part as God does call us to be good stewards of our earthly home and our earthly bodies. However, this should not be where all my energy is poured into. My goal should be to partner with God in the eternal instead of striving on my own efforts to make a change and make a difference. You see when we choose to bring God into our endeavors to make a difference, it changes everything because souls are changed! If helping those in third world countries in Jesus name is what God calls you to do, that’s great! If it is giving some extra TLC to our environment in Jesus name, that’s awesome! That’s the main point; as long as Jesus is in the center and we allow Him to work for His eternal purposes, our efforts will have eternal value and eternal impact!
Millennials today are super pumped about wanting to make a difference and we want to do it together. We are searching for community. Significance. Meaning. Marketers know this and actually target this generation by lulling them to spend their funds if they “help” someone.
Unfortunately, not all goes to a good cause and we must give wisely by doing our homework. Also, much of the hand-crafted items marketed as “unique” are also super expensive. It can ironically be trendy to go against culture, and again, marketers use this to prey upon youngsters who want to be cool. Many years removed from the lifestyle, I think about the lessons I’ve learned. As I now look to the next gen, I want to think about how we can make our mark. Being “cool” or elite doesn’t
help another who are truly hurting and it’s plainly not very nice. Instead, we need to think about what we believe in, why we believe it, and what have we elevated into the top slots of our priorities? Do they have a lasting impact? Maybe it’s time to re-evaluate. Today I still enjoy certain aspects of the culture considered “indie,” but I now have placed my identity in being a Christ follower instead of a humanitarian or social activist. Today, I don’t judge my peers because I was just like them. However, as God has realigned my priorities to fit His, my number one passion is Jesus and the gospel which lasts eternally. Reader, I want to encourage you to reconsider what you are pouring your gifts, time, and talents into? Is God your ultimate priority or it is something earthly?
The earthly is ultimately temporal so I would challenge you to consider the eternal with your gifts, time, and talents instead. If you want to give, pray about how and where God wants to use your finances to further advance the Kingdom of God. No other cause could be greater. So, hone in your passion towards a heavenly calling that will last forever. Today, I’m still an indie girl, I just got my priorities re-aligned. Again, while I am not saying to abandon any of those things previously mentioned that are in and of themselves not wrong, I am saying to think about how you want to make the greatest impact. Live that out and truly make your mark in the world!