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Knowledge & News
Thought provoking topics and series, necessary news and information.
If you missed last night at Collective, or just want to refresh, reflect and join the conversation, the full service Live-Cast and edited Podcast are here for you. We hope they'll stimulate more than our individual thought and reflection, and will draw us more deeply into the conversation of the community.
We strive to avoid offense, ask good questions, articulate and explain our responses.
Our discussion this evening began with examining a couple of phrases:
“If you don’t have anything good to say, don’t say anything at all”.
“Sticks and stones may break my bones and words will never hurt me”.
As I considered these statements quietly to myself, I realized that both of these came my way as a child and have been sort of embedded within the surface of my being without any questioning; until today. I could not help but wonder how the first statement can shut down and take away the voice of another person and to really ponder the idea of context around saying something good and wondering; who has the measurement of such. The thing about sticks and stones having the power to break my bones is physically painful, while the impact of another’s words can have a life altering effect on us over and over again.
As I sat and listened to the sermon today, I was once again reminded how powerful our words can be and how even more so with the power of our unspoken intent behind them. Among the many salient truths within the message on Sunday, I walked away with a deeper awareness around the sheer intentionality of what I say and if I don’t mean it; then perhaps I should not say it.
In the community statement the fact that we would seek to avoid offense and ask good questions; led us to a recap from the conversation from Occupy Trilogy that raised the question of; “What is a good question?” Around the courtyard there were several perspectives shared to include; “Knowing when not to ask a particular question”, “Questions should not be used to dismiss the feelings of another”, “The best religious conversations are done over a beer, while the best spiritual conversations are done in the dark”.
As I type this response, what came to me is the effort live into the wisdom of the proverbs that so eloquently connect the spoken word to the life that is best lived out loud and in the company of others.
Our words are more powerful than we may ever know. So whether you find yourself engaged in holy conversation with another person, standing before a listening crowd, wielding a keyboard or smart device and are one quote away from a social media rant; consider the fact that our words have the power to carve our valleys and mountains in hearts of others and uplift the invisible and grant us the gift of living peaceably with all…
A good question is humanizing; it asks first of itself in order to receive rather than to use. Good questions consider the intent and the impact in every moment and reach far beyond the edges of what we classify as information into the depth of stirring revelations.
When we find ourselves in the presence of the other, to question is an opportunity to know more of the other person by sharing a piece of your own soul. I am reminded more and more each day as to just how short life can be… This reminder helps me value my time in your midst and wasting breath, life and energy of chatter and noise is not worthy of who you are becoming to me. Thus, I am striving to question in a way that honors the light and life that is before me.
We are a misfit faith community that gathers in DeLand on Sundays at 5pm. Come as you are.
We value highly the metaphor of journey. We’re different people from different places and backgrounds, representing an intergenerational community, and we’ve traveled different paths. So, we agree not to make assumptions about the person across from us, next to us, or in conversation with us. We challenge ourselves to be sensitive, knowing this community includes a diverse group of people from life-long followers of Jesus, to people who are just now open to the idea that God might exist. We strive to avoid offense, ask good questions, articulate and explain our responses. We don’t assume fluency in bible, spirituality, or Church language, because we believe the message of Jesus is not for Christianity, but for humanity. So, we do everything in the spirit of love and grace.
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