Posts Tagged ‘civility’

The people out there

October 7, 2016

Who are these people?  Just how deep runs the us and them dynamic?  Yes, The United States is in the middle of a very confusing and bewildering election.  I feel that many have simply given up on any concept of cooperation.  We are sheltering in place with our own kind.  It is just too overwhelming.  How do we emerge from our cocoons or will we ever be able to emerge?

Aren’t we all really just looking for safety?  Should we stop and compare our lives to those in places like Syria where war has torn everything asunder?  Why are we fighting this war of ideas and opinions?  I am right and you are wrong.  How can I even consider that you are right when your belief threatens my very existence as a human being on this planet.  More often than not, the threat is very real.  Much more often.

How can I talk about race when I know so few people who are different than me?  How can I learn about LGBT lives when I don’t think that I have ever met anyone from that community?  If you are a Christian fundamentalist, I cannot have anything to do with you because it is too threatening to my identity.  Do you care about my identity?  Is it your sole (soul’s) intention to threaten my identity?  Do you really want me to disappear from the planet?

Black/white, gay/straight, right/left.  Over and over again.  The individual elements of the great melting pot have separated themselves from the whole.

Can we just stop?  What if everything were to just stop for a day?  No news, no blog posts, no activity on any social media platforms.  Would it cause everyone to just take a deep breath and reboot?  It is as if we are compulsively heading to our own extinction without thinking that we can do anything to stop it.  It almost sounds like addiction, doesn’t it?  Just looking at the increase in verifiable addictions such as the opioid epidemic makes one wonder if therein lies a clue.  A simple definition of addiction as defined by Merriam-Webster is “an unusually great interest in something or a need to do or have something.”

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Mistakes have been made

August 17, 2015

What do we do when a mistake has been made?  Do we talk about our intentions?  Do we apologize?  Do we say “I’m sorry”?

It is important how we talk about our mistakes.  It is important that we frame our conversation in a way that the wronged person has every chance to be heard.  One of the things that is most difficult to say is “I made a mistake”.  It is hard to be accountable.  The quest for accountability, however, is freeing for both parties.

Reconciliation

August 10, 2015

I just attended the Gather at the River convocation.  It was held in San Antonio, Texas at Travis Park United Methodist Church.  It was sponsored by the Reconciling Ministries Network (RMN) and the Methodist Federation for Social Action (MFSA).

There were over 700 people in attendance from all over the globe.  I have never been in a more welcoming environment.  The boundaries of gay, straight, transgender, gender identification, marital status, physical ability all just seemed to disappear in the safety of that environment.  The creation of safety was very intentional on the part of the organizers.

My reflection on this first “day after” is that we need to see with our hearts.  If we see with hearts filled with love, then those boundaries will continue to disappear.  Do you think it could really be that simple?

Letter to Jesus

January 25, 2015

Dear Lord Jesus,

Help us to understand
Help us to honor our personal experiences with you
Help us to honor all personal experience
Help us to understand the place of dogma.

Guide us to deeper understanding of difference
Guide us to deeper understanding of sameness
Guide us to deeper understanding of ministry
Guide us to deeper understanding of justice and fairness.

Be with us now as we suffer
Be with us now as we rejoice
Be with us now as we pray
Be with us now as we “be”.

Are We Drowning in Noise?

November 26, 2014

I was at my favorite food coop last night.  I had a lively discussion with the manager about the volume of the music.  I told him that at times it was so loud that I couldn’t concentrate on my grocery list and just wanted to leave.  He was a good listener and said that he would turn the volume down and bring it to someone’s attention.  They were very busy and I did not give it too much more thought and went about my business.  I was standing in the vitamin aisle and all of a sudden my entire body relaxed and just melted into the floor.  They had turned down the music.  Then something magical happened.  I could hear this cacophony of human voices and the sounds of a bustling market.  It really was magical.

Are the sounds of life drowning in noise?