Well-Being Australia chairman Mark Tronson claims there is ample evidence for this and as a macro example, Spain's fiscal predicament in a case in point.
In a recent article in the Sydney Morning Herald it explained Spain is faced with a fragile banking sector. Central bankers in Madrid said the country's lenders were saddled with problem property loans which totalled €184 billion ($234 billion), about 60 per cent of their property portfolios. (www.smh.com.au)
In other words, as one interpretation, property was seen as such a good investment some years ago that too much money went into property. The precursor was that too much property was invested in and reduced the value of that investment on the one hand, and on the other, as there was so much property the returns on that investment became less than the outgoings. The result for many was financial disaster.
Mark Tronson says these waves of investment interest are seen throughout history. Consider shares, property, gold, precious gems, stamps and whatever else. This he says, applies to everything in life. If someone eats too much ice cream day in and day out over a period of time, inevitably that person turns off eating ice cream. The illustrations are endless.
History of Christianity
The history of Christianity in England and America, claims Mark Tronson, has also evidenced these kinds of swings. Where several generations of evangelical Christians gave emphasis to one genre of theology, that 'that emphasis' eventually waned.
He provides the following examples: Puritanism in the eighteenth century brought the theological emphasis of Holiness to the fore. A century later the same theological clime saw Futurism take theological precedence. A century later Discipleship and Church Small Groups became the end-all.
The mega-church as opposed to the small shop-corner church in his view is in the midst of such a swing. There is a view that the small shop-corner church is the UK and America is in the throws of being revived after fifty years of struggling.
The mega-church has many of the resources to engage in mass media and television along with benevolent services both at home and abroad. The shop-corner church provides individual identity and significant value amongst a close knit group of believers. Research has shown that many congregants feel very comfortable within a small setting where they feel an intimacy and of personal value where their voice is heard and acknowledged.
On the other hand, many of the yuppie set want a large situation where they can enjoy the worship and do not have the time to be any further involved.
What is happening, in Mark Tronson's view, is that this yuppy set of the past three decades (whose financial contributions helped funded these mega-churches) are now in situations where they have a personal invigoration to get involved in church life. A dribble are returning to shop-corner churches and this is expected to grow.
Moreover there are concerns abroad the wider church of the humongous amounts of money passing through mega 'City Harvest Church' coffers. The most recent example was Singapore's mega church senior pastor and two others arrested for allegedly misusing $18m of church funds. (au.christiantoday.com)
It is this constant ebb and flow with its historical traceable pathways illustrates that, as Solomon said, nothing is new under the sun. Wiser heads within denominations are recognising that such situations are nothing to be afraid of, rather endorsed and supported.
Dr Mark Tronson is a Baptist minister (retired) who served as the Australian cricket team chaplain for 17 years (2000 ret) and established Life After Cricket in 2001. He was recognised by the Olympic Ministry Medal in 2009 presented by Carl Lewis Olympian of the Century. He has written 24 books, and enjoys writing. He is married to Delma, with four adult children and grand-children.
Mark Tronson's archive of articles can be viewed at www.pressserviceinternational.org/mark-tronson.html