Have you ever known someone so clueless you just wanted to grab their shoulders, shake them, and say WAKE UP! While I am sure none of us would actually do that I am equally sure we have at least wanted to.
Do current events ever make you want to do this? Does watching what the organized “church” has become ever tempt you to grab someone and start shaking? It sure does me. It makes me angry. But then it makes me sad. I see things all around me every day that makes me so sad.
This is not the time for shallow Christians who just want to be entertained. It is not the time for Country Club Churches who want to exclude anyone who is not like them. This is not the time to try to take over the world with money and political power.
The passages in the New Testament that talk about Jesus getting angry used to confuse me when I was younger. Now I can relate. I also understand that underneath that anger was great sadness.
That sadness is only compounded by the realization that people can not be forced to awaken. People must come to the awareness of a God of love who is ever-present in, through and expressing as all of Creation — even those folks who drive us crazy.
So all we can really do is learn to control the anger, feel the sadness, but not let it lead us into despair. Now is the time to stay on our path, lead by example and be ready to listen to and provide guidance as asked by seekers. Ours is not to drag people kicking and screaming into the Kingdom of God but to stay on the path and show the way.
This Wednesday (June 3) I will begin posting the Wednesday Update on the Facebook Page. This will be content just for our Facebook followers and will not appear here on the blog. So like and follow the Espirational Facebook page, tell your friends and I will see you on Facebook Wednesday for the first Wednesday Update!
It seems appropriate to end our month of posts on communication with a little get-together or party if you will. Hopefully, this will give us a chance to meet new readers and get to know the “old-timers” a little better.
Please leave a brief introduction in the comments below with a link to your blog or website if you have one. Invite your friends and let’s have fun with this!
I think one of the greatest gifts to come out of the COVID-19 pandemic will be learning new ways to communicate. During this time when we have not been able to gather in groups people have stepped up to reach out electronically.
How have you been gathering differently during this crisis? Have you attended a work staff meeting via Zoom? Have your places of worship been live streaming services, prayers, or even just “check-in” times? Maybe you’ve checked on elderly friends, neighbors, or family members via phone, email or Facebook. Did Grandma or Grandpa read a story or sing with your children via Skype? These are just a few of the ways we have been reaching out to each other during this time of physical isolation.
What are some of the things you have been doing to stay connected? Tell us your ideas in the Comments area below.
“Americans no longer talk to each other, they entertain each other. They do not exchange ideas, they exchange images. They do not argue with propositions; they argue with good looks, celebrities and commercials.”
Has someone ever told you, I don’t discuss politics and religion? That doesn’t usually mean they won’t talk about those things with anyone — just not those who disagree with them. I understand not wanting arguments and hurt feelings, but people who do not agree with us are exactly the ones we need to talk to.
It is possible to have a calm, rational conversation between people who disagree. Not easy, but possible.
So how do we do this?
Suspend judgment and keep an open mind.
Listen more than you speak.
Give up any ideas about converting the other person.
Keep things calm and civil.
No insults or name-calling.
Avoid direct confrontation Don’t back anyone into a corner.
Shake hands, thank the other person for sharing their opinion. and part in peace.
These guidelines came as the result of a conversation with someone I do not agree with. Someone I saw as the enemy showed me it is possible to have those difficult conversations and part friends.
The only way to heal the great divide between groups and people is to communicate. Start talking!