We need to talk.
Is it just me, or does it seem like the line between reality and satire is getting blurrier? The other day I came across a social media post that said something to the effect of, “Future historians will have to specify which month of 2020 they specialize in.” While this was probably meant as a joke, I think the humor in it comes from the possibility that it may very well be true one day. So many significant yet unpredictable things seem to be happening in out world at the same time, that it is difficult to discern how we as individuals and as the church are being called to respond.
One of the questions that has been rolling around my mind for the past few months has been, “What does it mean for us to be the church when we are not able to be at the church?” Or, related, yet slightly different, “What does it mean to be this church in this place in this moment?” This moment may feel chaotic for us, but that doesn’t have to deter our working ministry.
On the first Sunday in June, our text in worship was the seven day creation story in Genesis 1. Our God creates and has always created out of chaos (the literal meaning of the word usually translated “void”). God creates, by God’s own initiative, but God also gives us authority and responsibility to care for, be fruitful with, and multiply God’s creative work. What might God be creating in this moment, and how is God calling us to participate in it? As a global pandemic has disrupted almost every area of our lives, and as tensions rise over what life amid a pandemic should look like, what new and renewing ways of life are becoming possible? As conversations about race and white privilege become more common, open, and cautiously optimistic in the wake of new and centuries-old grief, what do wholeness, healing, harmonious living, and shalom look like? If things that were once unimaginable are now our reality, or what once would have been considered an exceptionally big news day is now just an average Tuesday, what good things might be worth doing and trying, that were once thought unimaginable?
These are hard questions that have no easy answers. However, I think one of the most important things we can be doing right now is wrestling with the hard questions that come up from the world around us, and discerning what they mean for us and how we as the church are called to respond.
These are not just big, difficult questions, I believe they are also especially exciting questions that have the potential to lead to wonder-filled conversations. I also think that we can have a lot of fun along the way. To that end, let’s get together for Hard Questions Happy Hour, Wednesdays in July from 5-6pm on Zoom. Bring your own beverage (with or without alcohol), questions, and imaginations. Everyone is welcome, and whoever shows up are the right people for the conversation. If you don’t have the right equipment for Zoom video meetings, you can also call in by phone.
Zoom Link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/83224125795
Meeting ID: 832 2412 5795
One tap mobile
Dial from any phone:
+1 669 900 9128 (will need Meeting ID: 832 2412 5795)
See you there,