Happy Juneteenth! Until a few years ago, I had no idea what Juneteenth was. Now some are calling for it to be a national holiday in the US. Juneteenth, also called “Freedom Day,” commemorates the reading of federal orders in the city of Galveston, Texas, on June 19, 1865, proclaiming all slaves in Texas were now free. Here’s an explainer for why the holiday is important today.
We continue to live in remarkable days unlike anything any of us have ever lived through. I was reflecting this week with leaders in one of our Gravity Leadership Academy cohorts that it’s hard to even know how to answer the question “How are you?” right now. I don’t think I’ve felt more disoriented as a leader. Most of the time I feel “fine,” but then there are moments when I realize that my body is telling me that I’ve been dealing with a whole host of low-grade stressors I’m not used to.
And I hear this from a lot of leaders now, too. So, along with them, I’m trying to learn how to care for myself so I can lead well and stay involved for the long haul, but it’s hard to know how to do this. We don’t have any templates for it. I wonder what have you’ve found helpful in this regard?
Here are the curated links for the week. I pray they’re helpful for you as you discern how God is at work in your life and ministry to bring his justice and reconciliation to your communities.
- We’ve released THREE podcast episodes since last Friday! First, here’s a cop’s perspective on police brutality, protests, and defunding the police (he’s for it!). Several people told us they wept through this episode.
- Second, Lacy Borgo walked us through how to have spiritual conversations with children (a skill many of us need to cultivate as we seek to talk with our kids about racism).
- Finally, N.T. Wright was on the podcast (!!) talking about how Christians can faithfully respond to the coronavirus pandemic (remember that?), as well as the protests against racism.
- Speaking of N.T. Wright, he gave an online talk recently called “Undermining Racism” (caveat: I didn’t get time to watch the whole thing, but I assume he has good things to say).
- (This would all be old news for you if you were subscribed to our podcast, of course. If you’re not, go ahead and subscribe! We’re on Spotify now, too!)
- Esau McCaulley has been ON FIRE lately, and his latest is no exception: What the Bible Has to Say About Black Anger.
- With a pandemic and protests that have both gone global, Ekemini Uwan counsels us to embrace radical acceptance, because we are NOT going back to “normal”.
- Phil Vischer, creator of Veggie Tales and co-host (with Skye Jethani) of the Holy Post Podcast, released an extremely helpful history of race in America. This is an excellent “explainer” for those who don’t get what the big deal is about racism (and want to learn).
- This is another helpful video, a cartoon that illustrates how systemic racism has worked in America.
- Finally, Gravity Leadership co-founder Matt Tebbe has some “Dos and Don’ts” for White Christian leaders trying to get up to speed with racism.
That’s all for this week, friends. May God’s presence and transforming power be evident to you this week so you can lead others to participate more fully in the life we share with the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
Grace and peace,
Ben S [for Gravity Leadership]
P.S. We are starting a new Year 1 Gravity Leadership Academy cohort soon (“Find Your Center”), as well as a Year 2 cohort (“Establish Your Orbit”). If you or anyone you know is interested, just contact us and I’ll get you more details so you can jump in!
P.P.S. Want to get curated links like these in your inbox every week? Join our online community by filling out the form below: