Friday, October 5, 2012

five links for your weekend

If you find yourself with some extra time this weekend, you won’t go wrong to click through to these brilliant writers…

1) This one is older, but oh so timely as we’re in the midst of this election season. Boy, how the church is messed up right now. I have been filled with sadness this week over some of the ways that people who profess to be followers of Christ talk about politics and the people that they ‘oppose’. We need a refocus on what, on Who matters…

The Missing Jesus - Jonathan Martin: “And yet what if [Jesus] has never been more relevant?  What if the world has never been more ripe for the surprise of His embodied grace?  What if He still has the capacity to surprise, to astonish, to mystify, to defy all of our expectations?”

 

2) Oh feminism. Subject of jokes, of derision, of fear, and some of that is deserved. That man-hating, bra-burning feminism of all the stereotypes isn’t the kind of feminist I am. In fact, it’s not the kind of feminist that most people are. So I claim the title with pride, albeit with a bit of disappointment that I have to qualify it so often.

Confessions of an Accidental Feminist - Rachel Held Evans: “I am an accidental feminist, for my liberation did not come from  Simone de Beauvoir or Betty Friedan, but from Mary and Martha, Junia and Priscilla, Phoebe and Tabitha. It came from the marvelous and radical recognition that if the gospel is good news for them, then maybe it is good news for me too... “

 

3) I have happily resumed ‘bible study’ with our little group of mamas as of this past week. I’ve desperately missed them and our every-other-week meetings. We talk about babies and breastfeeding and health and crafts – all those things are worthwhile, to be sure, but this study promises to be something a bit transformational, I think. Something that causes each of us to come alive, to move forward, to be awake. This post reminds me of the journey we’re beginning together this fall.

Don’t Go Back to Sleep – Kathy Escobar for SheLoves/Magazine.com: “Yes, my friends, it’s time to wake up, brush off the dust, get to our feet and live. I don’t want any more years to go by where I waste them sleeping because I was afraid—afraid of disapproval, afraid of people leaving me, afraid of getting hurt again, afraid of being misunderstood. Being awake is harder. Sleep protects us from feeling pain, but it also protects us from feeling life.”

 

4) I am struggling a bit with finding my voice here in this space. We’ve been trained, most of us, to disguise our true voice with prettiness, with well-crafted sentences (even though there is and always will be a place for good grammar), and with a mask of Pinterest beauty where all the world is made right with some chalkboard paint and a mason jar. I find it’s easy to put the text to page when that’s the goal I’m writing towards; it’s far harder to wait for the sacredness of my true self, my honest voice. Letting our voices shine through is scary and brave and exactly what each of us need, whether we are the writers OR the readers.

Say It Holy and Broken - Elora Nicole: “I refuse to come of age as a mask. I pray daily to say it hot and piercing and holy and broken. And until I feel those embers spark, I’ll rest in the undone.”

 

5) If there is one thing that I’m most grateful I’ve begun to truly understand, it’s grace. True, free, relentless, violent, undeserved, unimaginable grace. Grace that doesn’t tread lightly over the victims, but overflows on both the innocent and the condemned. It’s for all of us…

sacrificing privilege on the altar of grace – suzannah paul.the smitten word: “Privileged and powerful, weak and wounded. To transform one is to change us all, and grace looks like accountability and boundaries as much as forgiveness and reconciliation….Love serves and sacrifices. Grace surrenders advantage, levels hierarchy, and lifts the humble, not striving to fix or police pain from a comfortable distance but sitting together in its midst.”