Vol 3, Num 1 :: 2004.01.02 — 2004.01.15
At a staff meeting in October, someone or something suggested the idea of giving awards to movies, books, ideas, events, people, music, etc. that exemplify the values of *culture is not optional. And so the Asterisk Awards were born.
The first round of awards focuses on the culture around us in an attempt to express that we are paying attention (indeed we are helping to shape that culture) and that we think there are a lot of good things happening. We hope that taking note of the good things will lead to more good things. The second round of awards, which will be the focus of our next issue, pertain to catapult magazine in particular. We’ll be asking you to reflect and report on your experience over the past year with our articles, discussion, and reviews.
These awards are not just about identifying the “best” and “worst” of 2003; they’re about identifying those things that have changed us in some way, those things that have served as epiphanies, large and small, and those things that are excellent. And hopefully by discerning among our cultural experiences in a defined period of time, we will learn better how to create, emulate, analyze, reject, and do what still needs to be done.
Neither are the awards only about lifting up specifically Christian pursuits. Of course, we seek what’s good and true, but such things can be found in the most unlikely of places. At no time should we be lured into a false sense of safety, simply because we are in the presence of the work of believers; nor should we feel a false sense of danger when in the presence of the work of non-believers. We human beings are complex, paradoxical creatures, capable of honoring or dishonoring our Creator even without our cognition, which is why the skill of discernment is so essential and why the dichotomy between “sacred and secular” has little relevance as part of the criteria for this year’s awards.
But we don’t hope to only empower our readers to analyze well and make good decisions; we hope to empower believers to take practical action toward a God-honoring culture, putting together the puzzle pieces of passion, experience, and opportunity toward creating tangible evidence of the Kingdom that is both here and to come.
As you read through these awards, consider how you are or might be part of the solution to the problems of our culture and begin taking note of those examples you’d like to lift up for next year’s awards. And may your confidence be great that we are working for the one who has already claimed victory.