A Time to Listen
Dear Kaleid Ladies,
Winter in all of its quiet, monochromatic expression is nature’s prime space for listening.
Given the intense nature of the last few weeks, here at Kaleid we welcome winter’s inherent invitation to pause and to reflect. Right now, our community is engaged in a brief season of listening.
Listening to Others:
First, we are listening to wise voices from people within the Church who know something about the overlap between politics, evangelicalism, and our current cultural moment. We are seeking to understand Christian nationalism more deeply because, as women of the American Church, we care to understand our own context better.
The two podcasts we are sharing this week work well in conversation with one another. When we listen to a variety of voices on the same topic, we can hear things that we might not otherwise hear.
We suggest listening to this podcast from The Witness, first. You could begin around the 20 minute mark when they start the discussion about the capitol riots, if you’d like. You’ll find an impassioned and interesting conversation between two black theologians, Jemar Tisby and Tyler Burns.
Next, this podcast from Christianity Today presents the insights of leaders from the white evangelical church who are seeking to understand Christian nationalism by talking with Paul Miller, a professor and author of a book on the topic.
Neither recording minces words, but both offer important considerations for those of us wanting to make sense of this season in our “capital C” church life. We hope you know by now that Kaleid is a community where we engage hard topics together, knowing that God can be trusted to be faithful to us on our journey, even as we seek to be faithful to God in our world. It’s ok to be disrupted. It’s healthy to be curious. It’s helpful to listen. It’s good to do all of this in community.
After we listen to other people who know more or differently than we do, we are pausing to listen to God and to be open to God’s formative care.
Listening to God:
We are happy to share this prayer-as-poem from George MacLeod. It is a prayer of renewal for the church, and it can be a doorway into listening to God’s heart for the church and for the world. Read it slowly, a few times, and then spend a few minutes in silence, listening to the Holy Spirit’s invitation to you.
A Chaos of Uncalculating Love
It was your custom,
to go to the temple,
to the noisome temple
sometimes to the scandalised temple
listening to the mumbo jumbo,
but it was your custom to go.
Give us grace in our changing day
to stand by the temple that is the present church,
the noisome temple
the sometimes scandalised temple that is the present church,
listening sometime to what again seems mumbo jumbo.
Make it our custom to go
till the new outline of your Body for our day
becomes visible in our midst.
(George MacLeod, The Whole Earth Shall Cry Glory, p. 39)
We pray blessings on your day today, friends!
The Kaleid Team
P.S. Thanks to Amy Julia Becker for noting the two podcasts in her resource guide. If you’ve never listened to her podcast, it’s a great one to add to your list!