From Peggy Senger Morrison, on naming rejection honestly:
Sometimes they curse at me. Sometimes they cry. They almost always argue their side. Sometimes they quote our grandest, highest aspirational statements back at me. Sometimes they own their part – sometimes they don’t. Sometimes they just walk away. But they never thank me. They don’t feel released to better fitting opportunities. They feel rejected. Because we have rejected their membership in our community based on their behavior. I don’t expect them to like me, whatever our relationship was before. Because I have divorced them from the community. They do not go out into the world and say nice things about me or the program. Most of them have more experience with rejection than I do, but they hurt.
From John Pattinson, on hard conversations:
It doesn’t have to be this way. We don’t have to form strategic alliances or send veiled messages. We don’t even have to dis-member the Body of Christ. We can create a culture of rich dialogue, even around our disagreements. We can cultivate community conversations marked by gracious space and spacious grace.
From Stephen Davison, on spiritual authority:
Somewhere in the confusing flurry of blog posts and Facebook posts around this event, I think I read that some meetings threatened to leave the yearly meeting if it did not dissociate itself from West Hills.
This is one of the signature forms of passive aggression among Friends, to hold a meeting hostage to your opinions or feelings. “If you do [x], then I’ll do [y].” Or, “If you don’t do [x] . . . “
When a Friend or a meeting acts this way, they are essentially pitching over the side their submission to the work of the Holy Spirit in the meeting, believing that they already know what God wants the meeting to do.
From David Lose, on John 6:56-59:
Once again, it is as easier for me to identify with the crowds who misunderstand and question Jesus than with Jesus himself. Because what Jesus has been saying, and what we have heard these past four weeks, is indeed hard to listen to and hard to understand. That Jesus is the bread of life? That he provides the only food which truly nourishes? That he gives us his own self, even his own flesh and blood, to sustain us on our journey? These are hard words, hard to hear, hard to comprehend, hard to believe.
From Susan Howell, on gender equality
“Sure, all people are equal, but people living in the Midwest are supposed to lead those in other regions of the US.” […] Is it possible to truly believe statements that promise equality, but offer limitations and qualifications to that statement? Of course not. And as a woman, I don’t buy this “equal but” statement, either.
From Steve Garnaas-Holmes, a prayer embroidering on the Armor of God passage in Ephesians 6:
God, give me grace
to allow you to be my only defense…
From Mallory Ortberg, rewriting CS Lewis:
“We don’t have to do anything,” Aslan reminded her. “Mr. Tumnus’ troubles sound like a Mr. Tumnus problem.”
Lucy helped herself to another slice of cake instead of chasing after a pantsless man-goat who had failed to guard his own self-interest, and was all the happier for it.