Happy Friday, y’all! I am writing to you fresh off two weeks of vacation! It was a rejuvenating time.
One of the major shifts that took place for me on this vacation was my mind got “unhooked” from social media. Before this vacation, with the pandemic and the protests, I was noticing that my mind would anxiously drift toward wanting to “check and see what’s happening right now” in an effort to figure out what to do and how to lead.
I was falling for a leadership fallacy I learned about from Edwin Friedman’s book A Failure of Nerve: believing that newer and better information would help me lead well in these times. (It doesn’t and won’t.)
Unhooking from the social media “drip” has been profoundly helpful for my ability to focus and actually lead the people I’m responsible to lead. I’m also thankful that, even after being back to work for a week, my mind has been able to stay unhooked from the anxiety, even though I’ve been a bit more engaged in “what’s happening out there” via social media.
Social media’s tricky, eh? If you didn’t get a chance to listen to it, check out this podcast Matt and I recorded about the complexities of navigating social media as a leader. And here are the curated links for this week:
- We’ve been releasing podcasts! Amy Brown Hughes on Amazing Ancient Christian WomenAmy Brown Hughes on Amazing Ancient Christian Women, Meeting God in Your Actual Life with Gem and Alan FadlingMeeting God in Your Actual Life with Gem and Alan Fadling, and Becoming an Ordinary Mystic with Franciscan Friar and Priest Albert Haase.
- The oft-linked-to Esau McCaulley has a good, just in time for back-to-school piece on how the coronavirus pandemic is forcing parents to weigh their kids’ safety against their need for freedom, which is a tension Black parents have been contending with for generations.
- Shannon Hopkins on how to lead when things are falling apart (a skill set we ALL need to learn ASAP).
- An interesting article on how historically pandemics, while they wreak havoc, also tend to lead to new creativity on the other side. (I’m praying for a renewal of vitality and creativity in the church in the midst of and on the other side of this pandemic.)
- This looks interesting: Seminary Now is a new, on-demand streaming video platform that delivers biblical, theological, and practical ministry training from a diverse group of leading educators and thought leaders.
- A 90-minute video that is well worth your time: Eddie Glaude in conversation with Cornel West about the prophetic challenge of James Baldwin to our present-day crisis.
- Our own Matt Tebbe and Michael Gonzalez have been having Uncomfortable Conversations About Racism: Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3 are available as videos on Facebook.
That’s all for this week. I leave you with a quote from 4th century church father Gregory of Nyssa:
One who has seen God has, in the act of seeing, gained all that is counted good: life without end, everlasting freedom from decay, undying happiness, a kingdom that has no end, lasting joy, true light, a voice to sing pleasantly in the spirit, unapproachable glory, perpetual rejoicing, in a word, the totality of blessing.
May you see God today, and in the act of seeing, gain all that is good.
Grace and peace,
Ben Sternke (for Gravity Leadership)
P.S. If you’d like to get these curated links in your email inbox each week, fill out the form below.