Before I moved to Dallas, I was a manager in the Information Systems department of a medium-sized company that owned funeral homes and cemeteries. Yes, even funeral homes have information systems. And, yes, I was a nerd. The part of my job that I liked the most was facilitating groups of people in a software design process. I got to use lots of office supplies: sticky notes, flip chart pads, dry-erase boards. But the thing I liked the most was that, in the process of designing software, you inevitably had to design a business. In trying to narrow down a business function to the point that it could be accurately captured in software, we had to pick the business apart, find and resolve conflicts, create a unified mission.
Now I’m a different kind of nerd. I love the Bible. I love theology. I love church. But what I still really love is picking things apart, finding the common threads, and weaving them into something new. Maybe I’m the same nerd, just aimed in a different direction.
We’ve spent the last five weeks picking things apart. We’ve been talking about an ethic of love that deconstructs systems of power. We’ve covered a lot of ground: the earth, the alien, neighbors of different races and classes, the others within our own families. We’ve even talked a little about how and why we define the other as the other. Now it’s time to pick up those threads and weave them into the dreams of God. With sticky notes and flip charts and prayer! Nerds FTW!
Elvis was right: there’s not much point to all this conversation, if there’s not some action. So this week we’re going to move a little closer to action. In prayer and reflection, we’ll break into small groups and, with some guiding questions, we’ll talk about which pieces mean the most to us as individuals and as a group. What challenges us? What is obvious? Where do we agree or disagree? Where do we want to move forward?
Obviously, this does not get us quite to the action part, so the conversation must continue. In a couple of weeks, we will convene our Social Action Team to try to put together a portfolio of social justice concerns that makes the best possible use of our limited resources and allows us to develop ongoing relationships around those issues. I hope that everyone will continue to participate in that conversation.
Please join us on Sunday, 11am at the Kessler, as we dream together with God to make it on earth as it is in heaven.
Grace and Peace,