A few weeks back, I recorded an iTunes Podcast with Sarah Bragg, host of Surviving Sarah, a podcast focused on what it means to survive — survive life, yourself, your kids, your jobs, whatever! [I stole that from her site, btw!]
In Shonda Rhimes’ new book, Year of Yes, she recounts being honored by Elle Magazine as a powerful woman in television. As the ceremony hostess ran off the litany of accomplishments of the women in the room, she noted that as the women were being complimented, they did one of three things: Continue reading
We’re uncertain about a lot of things.
We spend our entire lives uncertain about…life.
What school to attend. What job to go after. Who to date. Who to marry. What kind of business to start. Where to live. To have kids or not. Chipotle or moes. Red or Blue pill.
We are uncertain about the state of our world and our political and religious leaders’ ability to guide us fairly and justly. We don’t know if we’ll see Jesus or Satan himself when it’s all over. We’re uncertain if we made the right choice about skim milk or 2%; some of us wonder whether or not if living life is worth living at all.
The things in our lives that are not definite, that we cannot fully grab a hold of (and control) often leave us ambivalent about life in general. We become apathetic and slow to make a decision on anything because the uncertainties of our lives leave little room to rest. Our minds wonder at night, our hearts race throughout the day. “Did I get it right?” we must know. Continue reading
You and I get tickets to the greatest show on earth: the Ringling Brothers Circus.
There was some kind of mix up and our seats are in different parts of the arena. My seat is in the lower level near the arena floor and your seat is up top in the 300 section. The seats are high but you have a great view of everything.
When the show is over, we meet up and talk about the circus:
“That show was amazing,” you exclaim. “The flying trapeze artists were so flexible! The lions were so majestic! The elephants tricks were seamless!”
“You think so?” I ask. “The show as good but, the way they poked the elephant with that little prod to get her to stand on her hind legs was kinda weird. And every time the trapeze artists came down off the ropes, they limped to their exits like their feet and limbs ached badly.”
“What? There was no elephant prodding — and those trapeze artists are flexible and nimble! I saw them prance off stage and they were fine!”
“You couldn’t see what I saw,” I’d say. “I was up close, near the ground. I could smell the smells of live stock and had a vantage point you didn’t have.”
This is how perspective works. Continue reading
We can trace the path of some of our most beloved biblical characters through their call to ministry: Moses, Gideon, even Jeremiah were called by God, pushed towards that call despite their own fears, and were reassured that God would be with them as they went forth in obedience. It’s not nearly as common to hear of a “call narrative” for women in the bible, however. The biblical stories of women entering ministry are present but often overlooked. Continue reading
In his book, Cut Dead, But Still Alive, Caring for African American Young Men, my friend and mentor, Dr. Gregory C. Ellison, II outlines this notion of a “community of reliable others.” This community, he says, does three things:
- share their stories of vulnerability through “authentic truth-sharing” to “elicit fearless dialogue”;
- work to envision new possibilities in the midst of hopelessness;
- act prophetically in supporting and nurturing those people once ignored and “unseen” living in the margins.
This community of reliable others, then, becomes a critical component to the lives of those who live in the margins, those whose lives are often strained between the hope for an imagined future and the hopelessness often found in a present reality. Continue reading