Have you heard the term “planned obsolescence”? My son learned that concept the hard way. He plays games on a hand me down tablet device that’s still perfectly functional. However, the manufacturer no longer updates the operating system software, so it won’t play the latest version of my son’s favorite games. He insisted he had to have a new device. That gave me a chance to use my favorite word with him, “No.”
I’ve been thinking about “planned obsolescence” in the context of our theme for this school year “New in Christ” based on 2 Corinthians 5:17. That term refers to the practice of designing a product with an artificially limited useful life. Much of our consumer culture is based on the premise that we must have the latest “new” thing – which is typically just a slightly revised version of the thing we already have. The great thing about our faith in Jesus is that it will never need to be replaced or upgraded. God’s love for us is timeless and perfect and the sacrifice Christ made on the cross for you and me lasts for eternity. The new creation that we are in Jesus is a one-time upgrade that will never fail. “Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever.” Psalm 136:1.