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Sermon: “Waiting for Adoption” (September 18, 2011)
09.19.11

The wilderness of waiting… Have you ever experienced that kind of wilderness? A place that is both wild and barren, a place far from home, a place where you learn a lot about yourself, but don’t quite feel settled, you don’t quite feel complete?

In his letter to the Romans, Paul is writing to friends who are in a wilderness time. They are a minority group in Rome. They’re experiencing persecution. They’re disconnected from other communities of believers. No doubt they’re learning a lot about themselves in their wilderness experience, no doubt their faith is growing, but there is a strong sense that they are not yet who they will become. They hope for a day when they will breathe freely, when they will be free. And, as with all people who wait for something better, the Roman believers need encouragement…which is why Paul sends this letter.

The great thing about Paul’s letters is that, while they were sent to particular communities dealing with specific issues, he speaks about those issues in ways that resonate with anyone on a faith journey. We might not be experiencing the kind of persecution those first century believers in Rome were experiencing, but I’m guessing that every one of us here knows something about not feeling completely whole in our faith journeys. I imagine that very few of us feel like we’ve arrived at our spiritual destination. Which of us every moment of every day feels as close to God as we possibly can get?

Every week at Pilgrimage, we say the familiar words—say them with me: “One fact remains that does not change, God has loved you, loves you now, and will always love you. This is the good news that brings us new life.” We all know that right? We all know that God loves us. But feeling that love? That’s a different thing completely. Knowing that God loves us and really feeling loved by God…two very different journeys. One of the journeys happens in our head, our intellect, in the abstract. The other happens in the real world, in the context of the material things around us, in our own flesh and blood.

As Paul is trying to describe this gap between the relationship with God we do have and the relationship with God for which we hope, it makes sense that he seizes on the image of adoption. Whatever else you might think of the Apostle Paul, he was a brilliant theologian. His arguments are complex; his images sometimes startling in their accuracy. This idea of “groaning as we wait for adoption” is one of them. Considering how lost we sometimes feel, how much we long to feel connected to something larger than ourselves, how desperately we want to feel—really feel—like children of God, Paul seized on the deepest longing known to human beings, the longing to belong.

Wanting to get some sense of the experience of waiting for adoption, I sent a request to several people in our congregation who know something about the adoption process. It’s interesting that each of the four families who responded is at a different stage in the process. Susan Dempsey and Becky Nelson are several years beyond the adoption of their girls. The adoption process for Brendan Ashton, Kristi and Angie’s son, was just completed this summer. Next Sunday, Matthew Kozak Gula will be baptized. The following Wednesday, his adoption will be complete. And Wayne and Stephen have been actively waiting to adopt for a year and a half now. Four different families; four different perspectives from which to view the process of waiting for adoption.

While their places in the waiting process are different, in all the stories, the waiting itself is similar. It involves profound longing, a feeling of incompleteness, a fierce love for something one doesn’t yet have, a deep desire to belong. In Romans, Paul says this: “For in hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what is seen? But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience.” There is perhaps no other population in the world who understands hope better than those who are waiting for adoption.

Because each of the stories is beautiful and important, I wanted you to have copies of them. I invite you to take them and read them at your leisure. Right now, I’d like to read from two of those stories.

First, on the “groaning” that attends waiting for adoption, Angela Gula wrote: “These words couldn’t be any truer for Michelle and me. Even before Matthew’s birth we waited, anticipating the day that we would legally be recognized as a family. We always knew it would be a challenging process….we knew it would take time…there was plenty of groaning, some frustration and even some tears shed. What we didn’t know was just how anxious we’d get as the day approached. Here we are now, just 10 days from the final hearing and we continue to groan inwardly while we wait for adoption.”

Paul was a master wordsmith. There comes a point in his writing, though, where he recognizes that much of the faith journey, much of human experience happens far deeper than words can go. How often can you say, “I really want to have a child!” Or, “I really want to feel like God’s child,” before the words feel superficial, old, small? There comes a point when words just don’t communicate the fullness of the meaning any more. At those moments–moments when we long for something so desperately there are no words left–groaning can help….even when there are only 10 days left before the adoption happens.

Everyone who has awaited adoption understands something of the pain of the waiting process, of the need for patience. At this point, in our community, the people who are best acquainted with this particular pain are Wayne and Steve. As you’ll read, the first part of the adoption process went quickly for them….mostly because they had control over the process. They filled out paperwork, went to state-mandated classes, completed a home study.

Then came the real waiting process, the time when they wait to be matched with a child or children. Here’s how they talk about the process of waiting. “Needless to say, here we are over a year later and we are still in the matching process. We keep telling ourselves that the right child will come into our lives at the right time for the right reasons, but sometimes that just doesn’t feel like enough when you have spent so much time preparing your heart for a child of your own. We continue to pray for patience and guidance as we wait for parenthood.”

Wayne and Steve’s story ends with prayer, a prayer for patience. Paul ends his discussion of waiting for adoption–waiting to feel, really feel, at one with God–with prayer, too. These are some of the best words about prayer in all of Scripture. He writes: Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we ought, but that very Spirit intercedes with sighs too deep for words. Don’t you love that? We get to the place where we don’t know what to say, where the feelings go deeper than words can reach, where all we can do is groan….and somehow the Spirit understands our groaning, then translates it into the language of sighs and communicates it to God? We groan, the Spirit sighs, and God still gets the message. Isn’t that great?

Are you waiting for adoption this morning? Not so much the kind that Wayne and Steve, Angela and Michelle, and many children in the foster care system are waiting for…are you waiting for adoption by God? Are you waiting to feel, really feel, like you belong to God’s family? Are you ready to get through all the words, all the forms, all the superficialities to the material reality of actually living with God? Are you ready to emerge from the wilderness and find your way home?

Today’s sermon ends with a time of prayer. In this time of prayer, I encourage you to refrain from words. Simply be in the presence of God. Communicate this morning in the language of sighs, or groans, if you need to. The invitation is to cut through all the superficialities and get to the heart of what you’re feeling in your heart…because God wants to know what’s going on there…and whatever you express to God from that deep, wordless place, God will understand. God will understand. Let us join our hearts together in prayer. [Two minutes]

In the name of our God, who creates us, redeems us, sustains us, and hopes for our wholeness. Amen.
Kimberleigh Buchanan © 2011

Romans 8:18-25

I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory about to be revealed to us. For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the children of God; for the creation was subjected to futility, not of its own will but by the will of the one who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to decay and will obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God. We know that the whole creation has been groaning in labor pains until now; and not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the first fruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly while we wait for adoption, the redemption of our bodies. For in hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what is seen? But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience.



Cotton Patch Evidence: Ch.3 “According to the KKK”
09.17.11

And so, Clarence and Martin set about making Koinonia habitable for their families and began the hard work of farming.

Not long after they’d moved in, they got their first visit from the KKK, folks who were upset that Clarence and Martin were sharing meals with the African American man they’d hired to work for them. In a tense stand-off, Clarence responded with customary humor. By means of that humor, he made a connection with his complainant and defused the situation.

Humor notwithstanding, Clarence and Martin were afraid. The KKK was no organization to mess with. I was struck by Clarence’s comments regarding their fear: “It was not a question of whether or not we were to be scared…but whether or not we would be obedient.” “It scared hell out of us, but the althernative was to not do it, and that scared us more.” (38, 39)

It’s that total commitment to God’s work–with every fiber of your being, every cell in your body–that so characterized Clarence….and that I’m not yet sure I’ve made. TOTAL commitment, that’s hard. Especially when the bad guys are breathing down your neck.

In a post a couple of months ago, I talked about starting to work my way through the Spiritual exercises of St. Ignatius. Swept up in the Koinonia stuff, I haven’t kept up with posts about the Exercises.

But this week, the two are intersecting. The basic journey of the Exercises in the first nine weeks was this–Feeling God’s love, acknowledging my defenses against that love (sin), and accepting God’s love even in my sinfulness (or inability to receive God’s love into my depths).

This week, the invitation in the Exercises is to hear God’s call–this One who loves me completely–to work with God in the world. Now, I’m all about working with God in the world. I’ve been preaching that forever. The difference with the invitation from the Exercises is that I don’t work with God in the world because “that’s what Christians do.” I work with God in the world because God loves me and, out of that love, invites me to work alongside. Working for justice is not simply another thing to do, just one more religious activity designed to get the God of guilt off our backs. No, working for justice in the world is something we do because God loves us and because the only loving response to that love is to join God in God’s work in the world. I don’t know. Maybe it’s a subtle shift…but, for me, it’s a big one.

Two other fun things about ch.3…Clarence’s creativity with the farming–climbing on the roof each morning to see what other farmers were doing, starting a “crop” of chickens, the mobile peanut harvester, the cow library… and the way he began to draw young, idealistic followers of Jesus to Koinonia. The more I read about Clarence, the more I want to meet him. This was one impassioned, faithful, creative, and charismatic man. What possibly could come next?



Cotton Patch Evidence: Ch.2 “The Experiment”
09.16.11

In this chapter, Lee does a great job of describing Clarence’s M.O. with everything he did. (1) He was deeply immersed in Scripture. A true Baptist, he believed that God speaks through the pages of Scripture. It was his desperate desire to know, really know what Jesus was talking about, especially in the sermon on the mount, that led him to become a Greek scholar.

(2) Though he immersed himself in Scripture in his studies, exegesis was never the end of the Bible study process for Clarence. If you’re not going to live by the truths you learn in Scripture, what’s the point? So, looking closely at the life around him–particularly the plight of the poor, which in Louisville, were largely people of color–Clarence sought to LIVE the biblical truths he discerned in his study of Scripture. (Hence his comment that the associational offices “should be put in the inner city, ‘where our preachers will have to wade through the shipwrecks of humanity to get there. I believe they would be better preachers.” (23) The Gospel wasn’t just words on a page for Clarence. The Gospel is to be lived in the here and now.

3) The third piece that always was key for Clarence, was community. Scripture is important, living the Gospel in real life is vital, but you can’t go it alone. You need a place to study and reflect on what you’re learning and what you’re doing. It makes sense that Clarence–in his attempts to reflect and discern–ended up in partnerships like the Koinonia group at the seminary and in relationship with people like Martin England and businessman A J Steilberg.

As committed as Clarenc was to Scripture, living Scripture (especially the teachings of Jesus) in real life, and doing all of that in community, the birth of the Koinonia “experiment” in Sumter County, Georgia, makes sense.

On p.26, when describing the on-camps Koinonia group, Lee summarizes the three main concerns of Clarence Jordan. In the group, “Clarence began to toss out his ideas about pacifism, racial equality, and the radical stewardship of complete sharing.” Those three ideas–peace, the brother-and sisterhood of all people, and economic justice–will shape everything else that is to come.

Question: On p.24, Lee writes: “The storehouse plan was tabled, but the question of waht influence a [person’s] faith ought to have on his economic resources apparently continued to tumble end over nd in Clarence’s mind.” What relationship do you see between faith and money?



Prayer for 9/11 Remembrance (Psalm 139:7-12)
09.14.11

Where can I go from your spirit? Or where can I flee from your presence?
If I ascend to heaven, you are there; if I make my bed in Sheol, you are there.
If I take the wings of the morning and settle at the farthest limits of the sea,
even there your hand shall lead me, and your right hand shall hold me fast.
If I say, “Surely the darkness shall cover me, and the light around me become night,”
even the darkness is not dark to you; the night is as bright as the day, for darkness is as light to you. (Psalm 139: 7-12)

**********************

A friend of mine has a plaque that reads, “Bidden or unbidden, God is present.” I’m not sure who spoke the words first, but I think they must have been inspired by Psalm 139. We heard the words read earlier. Now, we’re going to pray them…and we’re going to pray them in the context of 9/11. I can tell you that God was present everywhere and with everyone on September 11, 2001. I can tell you that God continues to work in and through that traumatic experience. I can tell you that, even after 9/11, God has loved you, loves you now, and will always love you….but how much more powerful will the experience be if you have the opportunity yourselves to get reassurance from God?

And so, Allen will read a line from Psalm 139, then I will suggest an image from September 11, 2001 to help you pray that line. After the prayer, you are invited to come forward and light a candle. You might come with a specific prayer in mind or simply to add a tiny piece of light to the room this day. For whatever reason, you are invited to come. I also invite you to come shoeless, as a way to signify that we all are standing on holy ground. Let us pray.

Where can I go from your spirit? Or where can I flee from your presence? Remember where you were on September 11, 2001, what you were doing, your first instincts when you heard the news. Now remember—or imagine, if you don’t remember—God’s presence with you on that day. (Silence)

 

If I ascend to heaven, you are there; Think of the people who died that day. Imagine them safely in God’s arms. (Silence)

 

if I make my bed in Sheol, you are there. Think of all the people who have experienced hell since that day. Imagine that, even in the harsh difficulties of their lives, God is with them, too. (Silence)

 

If I take the wings of the morning and settle at the farthest limits of the sea, even there your hand shall lead me, and your right hand shall hold me fast.
No matter where you have been since 9/11, no matter how your life has been impacted by that event, no matter how much poorer or more frightened or leery of your fellow human beings you might have become, no matter where your life’s journey has taken you since 9/11, imagine God beside you, leading you every step of the way, holding fast to you. Still. Always. (Silence)

 

If I say, “Surely the darkness shall cover me, and the light around me become night,”  Imagine the darkness of those days in September 2001, the dust and smoke, the grief and fear, the helplessness and hopelessness. (Silence)

 

even the darkness is not dark to you; the night is as bright as the day, for darkness is as light to you.   Now, imagine God’s light breaking through your darkness. Feel the light warm your eyes, feel the light of God’s love surround you and hold you. (Silence)

 

God, we thank you that, bidden or unbidden, you always are present with us.  Amen.

 

[Candle lighting]



Sermon: “Holy Ground Zero” (September 11, 2011)

Moses was keeping the flock of his father-in-law Jethro, the priest of Midian; he led his flock beyond the wilderness, and came to Horeb, the mountain of God. There the angel of the LORD appeared to him in a flame of fire out of a bush; he looked, and the bush was blazing, yet it was not consumed. Then Moses said, “I must turn aside and look at this great sight, and see why the bush is not burned up.” When the LORD saw that he had turned aside to see, God called to him out of the bush, “Moses, Moses!” And he said, “Here I am.” Then he said, “Come no closer! Remove the sandals from your feet, for the place on which you are standing is holy ground.” (Exodus 3:1-5)

What makes ground holy? Sometimes God just says it straight out, like God did with Moses: “Remove the sandals from your feet, for the place on which you are standing is holy ground.” Some places just have a sacred “feel” to them, “thin places,” they’re called…places where the other-worldly breaks in unbidden, places, I’ve heard, like Sedona, Arizona.

Then there are places that become holy because of what happens on them… like a small patch of land in Manhattan.

Chances are if you’re 15 or 16 or older, you remember exactly where you were when you learned about the planes flying into the World Trade Center Towers on September 11, 2001. A brand new pastor, on the job only 3 months, I was at MUST Ministries that morning. I’m not sure why, but they asked me to pray when we learned the news. I remember nothing about that prayer…except how inadequate it must have sounded. How do you pray for a situation you cannot comprehend?

Have you watched or read any of the 9/11 tributes the past couple of weeks? I don’t know how it is for you, but it’s still hard for me to see those images, to remember the feeling of absolute vulnerability and helplessness. In fact, when Allen asked if I’d be addressing 9/11 in today’s sermon, I told him “no,” that we’d be attending the Interfaith 9/11 Remembrance service at Mt. Zion tonight; no need to do it here in worship this morning. I guess that was my way of trying to avoid the still-painful parts of 9/11.

But when I began seeing all the tributes, the remembrances, I knew it would be important for us to talk about 9/11, not only in the interfaith service this evening, but here in our own community this morning. Whether we like it or not, 9/11 has become a vital part of who we are. 9/11 is part of our DNA now, it has shaped who we’ve become. It continues to shape how we live our lives, including our faith lives.

So, where does one begin remembering 9/11 on this tenth anniversary? Taking a cue from the season of creation, I’d invite us to consider 9/11 from the perspective of the land. While the land at the Pentagon and the scarred earth in Pennsylvania are key parts of the 9/11 experience, I want to focus on the land in Manhattan.

By the best estimates, the collapse of the Twin Towers registered 2.4 on the Richter scale. Yes. The earth quaked. It shook. It opened up to receive twisted metal and broken bodies. In a flash, a piece of earth that had sustained life became a mass grave. Dust, dust, and more dust rained down—perhaps God cried with dust that day, dry tears, a drought of grief. Days, the dust lasted. Weeks. Months. Dump trucks hauled away debris, load by load—bits of dirt, brick, and flesh mingled together. Traumatized workers picked through the debris, bit by bit, looking for signs, any signs of victims. Do you remember the feelings of utter helplessness?

One day, finally, the last dump truck exited “Ground Zero,” the last pile of debris was sorted. One day, finally, a decision about what to do with the piece of land on which the towers had stood had to be made. Another building? A tribute to those lost? Nothing at all?

What has emerged at Ground Zero is a little of all three. One World Trade Center is a new structure being built just adjacent to where the original towers stood. When it is completed in 2014, it will stand 400 feet taller than the tallest of the towers. There also is a tribute to the victims and survivors of 9/11. I recall there being lots of debate about the best memorial to be built. The design that won is basically two square holes surrounded by newly planted trees. Over the sides of the holes pours a continuous flow of water…finally, the tears; finally, the hope for all those new tree-lives; finally, life is emerging from death.

The most interesting thing about this memorial is the fact that it is a tribute and it preserves the emptiness parts of us always will feel when we think of 9/11. The death of so many people….that emptiness cannot be filled. But in our mourning, through our tears, the hope of new life emerges. Ground Zero has become holy ground.

It is important today to remember the lives lost on 9/11, to hug our family members a little more closely…but just as important is to ask how we might transform this traumatic experience into something positive. What have we learned from 9/11? What new hopes have emerged from the dust of the Twin Towers?

Allen and I just returned from San Francisco. Great place! So great, nearly half the world, it seemed, spent Labor Day weekend there. Man, at the people! Everywhere we went—people, people, people. Tourists.

One of the places we visited was Muir Woods. Established in 1908, Muir Woods is a wonder of a national park, rife with life—tall redwoods, beautiful creeks and hills, even a very large slug. Muir Woods is a beautiful place. Every so often, there were signs posted, asking for quiet on the trails, like the sign marking the entrance to the Cathedral Grove: “Walk quietly…listen to the heartbeat of the earth.” Nobody did. Everybody talked…which would have been all right if I could have eavesdropped. I’m sure there were many sermon-worthy comments being made there beneath the redwood canopy last Saturday. Unfortunately, people were speaking many different languages. The visitors that day were from all over the world.

Finally, we made our noisy, multi-lingual way into the Cathedral Grove–A place well-named. On a historical plaque in the grove, I learned that “in 1945, delegates from all over the world met in San Francisco to establish the United Nations. On May 19, they travelled to Muir Woods to honor the memory of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, whose death one month earlier had thrown the world into mourning.

“President Roosevelt believed in the value of national parks as sources of inspiration and human renewal. He also believed that good forestry practices and sustainable development of natural resources were keystones to lasting peace around the world. (Later, while standing in the same place, Secretary-General of the United Nations, Dag Hammarskjold, said: “Persons who love nature find a common basis for understanding people of other countries, since the love of nature is universal among [people] of all nations.”)

“Organizers of the (United Nations planning) event (in 1945) hoped the profound beauty and serenity of Muir Woods would inspire the delegates to pursue the president’s program for world peace as they met to establish the United Nations.” Isn’t that something? Finding the inspiration for world peace—not in a sterile conference room in a grand hotel, but in a forest, standing—together–on fertile ground?

It wasn’t until the flight home that I realized that the dream of the creators of the UN had been realized…because peering over my shoulder at the description of that 1945 meeting were people from Japan, Germany, Russia, China, France, Australia…Dag Hammarskjold was right—there in Muir Woods, people from all over the world literally came together over their love of the land.
I realized, belatedly, (ironically, while flying through the air) that in Muir Woods I had been standing on holy ground. The best proof of that fact? Among the tourists reading over my shoulder were people from Germany and Japan, our bitter enemies in World War II. On the ground in the heart of the forest, we were enemies no more. Just imagine who might no longer be our enemies 55 years from now?

So, what have Ground Zero and the ground in Muir Woods to do with each other? If FDR, Dag Hammarskjold, and all those tourists last weekend are to be believed, everything.

So many 9/11 remembrances—especially those coming from religious folk—seem to be focused on forgiveness. Don’t get me wrong. Forgiveness is an important part of the 9/11 experience. If you’ve ever forgiven anyone, you know how liberating the experience can be. Before extending forgiveness to an offender, it’s like you can’t get on with your life. It’s like all you want to do is to get even, to harm the offender. In the end, though, you realize that the greatest harm being done is to your own soul and well-being. Forgiveness frees us to move on with our lives. So, in relation to 9/11, forgiveness is important. Letting go of resentment, anger, hatred is important. Moving beyond all the pain and trauma—when we’re ready to do so—is important.

But then what? What lies beyond forgiveness? What lies beyond the trauma, the grief, the mourning? That’s where the ground comes in.

The only way—the only way—to find our way beyond the earth-shattering bombs and terror-caused graves, is to seek out and nurture connection with each other. Land, ground is a good means of making that connection. Land is something all people on the planet have in common. As inhabitants of planet Earth, we all depend upon the earth for sustenance. If, as FDR believed, good forestry practices and sustainable development of natural resources are keystones to lasting peace around the world, perhaps we can contribute to the kind of world peace that precludes terroristic acts by caring for the earth. Perhaps we can love our neighbors, in part, by loving the land. Perhaps world peace will happen on the day that we all, every inhabitant of planet earth, learns that all ground is holy ground. Or better yet, perhaps we can make all ground holy by the way we love our neighbors.

In the name of our God, who creates us, redeems us, sustains us, and hopes for our wholeness. Amen.

Kimberleigh Buchanan (C) 2011



Cotton Patch Evidence: Ch.1 “Derailed”
09.11.11

I’m a litte past my first week of Sept deadline, but here are few reflections–and questions!–from my reading of ch.1 of Dallas Lee’s biography/history of Clarence Jordan and Koinonia Farm.

It’s great to get the backstory on Clarence…how he was always a bit “detached” from his family, how he had the gift of verbal sparring from early on, how his nick name was “Grump.”

Lee charts well Clarence’s evolution from a wondering Southern child to a thoughtful, faithful man from the South…his ability at a young age to see the hypocrisy of a man singing “Love Lifted Me” at church one night and torturing a prisoner the next…his decision to pursue agriculture, rather than law, so as to help his African American neighbors…his decision to resign his commission in the ROTC because “Jesus was going one way and he was going the other”…his decision to follow God’s call to preach.

On the one hand, I am glad to get this background on Clarence; it gves a good sense of where his strong commitments to the faith of Jesus and racial and economic justice began. As with any of us, understanding Clarence’s past sheds helpful light on where he went in the rest of his life. That information is helpful.

On the other hand, reading about Clarence’s past makes me wonder about my own. As Lee draws the picture, Clarence was always a little different, kind of special. Though Lee is careful to say that some of the things Clarence likely was feeling as a child and teenager he probably wasn’t abe to articulate, still…it seems like he was a very perceptive child. I just don’t know that I would have been (or was) that perceptive.

Adorning the wall of our staircase here at home is a photograph of “the old home place” in Oglethorpe County, Georgia (just a few miles from Athens, where Clarence attended UGA). The centerpiece of the old home place is a large farmhouse. The place was sold a few years ago, but prior to that, that old house–even for those of us who only visited a couple of times–that place represented home. I don’t remember my maternal grandmother; she died just before my fifth birthday. But when the old folks talked about my grandmother growing up there, or Uncles Arthur and Leo, Aunts Inez and Henrietta…I could see them all in my mind, playing, working, eating, sitting in the yard swings talking.

Then, when I got my copy of the family history, I learned that the old farmhoue that I so loved had been built by slaves, slaves owned by my family.

That fact haunts me…it haunts me because I don’t know that I would have questioned the institution of slavery had I grown up at the old home place when the farmhouse was built. Would I have questioned racism as a 19th c. woman? Would I have questioned racism as a woman in the 1960s? I don’t know, I don’t know.

The bigger question for me is, Can someone like me live a life like the one Clarence Jordan lived….or does it take someone especially spiritually gifted like Clarence was?

What about you? Having read this first chapter, do you think Clarence Jordan is someone you can emulate, or only admire from afar? Is it possible for just anyone to live Christian faith as he did?

Another question….Do you remember anything from your childhood that struck you as unfair? Maybe it was your first encounter with injustice… How has that encounter shaped–or not–your faith life in adulthood?

Okay…ch.1. Let me hear from you! I’ll get to ch. 2 later this week.

Peace,

Kim