Lead with your Messy Self

My desk is a mess! No really, it’s pretty bad. I normally am a neat and organized person. I hate it when my house is not clean, but my desk (and office where I spend most of my work day) have become different animals and exceptions to all my life rules. About twice a year, I can normally see all of my desk clearly. But on days like today when I have spent nearly four months traveling off and on (which I think is my new normal), things just pile up.

This is the long side of my L shaped desk.

Messy desk

I’m almost embarrassed to share it with you. Believe it or not, there is some method to this madness. There is a book pile at the far end of the desk (two actually) of books that I have started but haven’t yet finished or books I plan to begin soon. Then there is a small stack of books that I have read that I want to review, write a summary, or take notes from. On top of that, there is some mail and pictures I need to sort through or file away. This is low hanging fruit but most days it’s not a priority because I can barely get through my email after work.

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Book Review: “Prophetic Lament” by @profrah

Prophetic Lament: A Call for Justice in Troubled Times

To believe that the United States has assumed the mantle of blessing from Israel is a faulty assumption. Israel’s exceptionalism arises from God’s grace. There is no scriptural support that the United States has earned God’s favor as an exceptional nation.

– Soong-Chan Rah

Why I picked up this book:

Prophetic Lament book cover

I have found Soong-Chan Rah to be a thoughtful and honest theologian, prophetic voice, critic and lover of God’s church. I was thrilled to hear him speak on this topic shortly after the book’s release and received a copy of it then.

Who Should Read Prophetic Lament:

I believe this is essential reading for anyone who considers themselves a leader in the church. The subtitle speaks for itself, “Call for Justice in Troubled Times.” I don’t think I have personally observed or experienced as much injustice in my lifetime as we are witnessing and experiencing today. I am troubled by the senseless violence, the growing “wealth” gap between the haves and have nots, the abuses against women and vulnerable children, the complete disrespect and disregard for God and his holy standards, the devaluing of black lives and targeting of black men, the destruction of families, the growing hate speech, rhetoric, and false reporting that has become common place in the age of social media, and that’s just to name a few. The temptation of everyone in this time is to blame or ask God, “Where are you?”

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HOT TOPIC: Why We Can’t Wait

Truth is: The past couple weeks have been filled with internal wrestling that include pain, hurt, and anger. I haven’t written much because I still don’t quite know what words to say. I understand that as a black woman, I am not alone in my suffering. I’ve been going before the Lord in prayer, reading his words, and I find myself drawing on the words, hope, and intestinal fortitude of our African American heroes and modern-day faith leaders, peacemakers, and activists.

 

I’m not very interested in sharing my opinions in this sacred moment. However, I do want to help my readers by encouraging them to listen well, and try to understand the painful history and trauma that people who look like me feel and experience in this country every day.

 

Even if you have friends who are from a different racial or ethnic minority group, you won’t know or understand these truths if the level of trust hasn’t been built, or if they don’t find you a safe person in which they can fully be themselves. That’s not your minority friend’s problem. That is a reality for you to explore.

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