I am already into my summer reading. Mostly, I’m reading and doing research for my next book. The manuscript is due to the publisher in the fall.
In the meantime, I’ve been doing a lot of reflection and introspection about what it means and what it looks like for me to lead as an African American Christian woman. God is affirming my commitment and confidence in his call to leadership, and he is also inviting me to speak into leadership conversations, as I continue to celebrate other women that are doing this work–women that we all need to know.
In light of a recent Christianity Today conversation, I have shared a syllabus of women authors that will benefit the whole church, both men and women.
You can find my contributions to the conversations and my book recommendations at Missio Alliance.
What are you reading this summer.
Imagine two neighbors, one white and one black sitting down for a cup of coffee. The white neighbor has history in the small town—her family runs the local restaurant, her uncle is the community pastor, her mom is a career teacher at the only primary school, and her great uncle is the mayor. The story of the white neighbor is well known by everyone and it is considered normal. The black neighbor is new to town, so her story is virtually unknown. It is either distorted, rarely heard, or told in small snippets.
This is what it sometimes feels like to be black in America. We are treated as outsiders in a town where those in the majority group know and trust each other because of a known and shared history; but because of limited personal interactions, lack of familiarity, or cultural awareness, it is easy for Americans who identify as white to perpetuate lies and myths about their black and brown neighbors.
Some may ask: Why are we so divided across racial/ethnic and socioeconomic lines in America? I believe people desperately want an accessible way to answer this question, to confront their concerns, and to better understand themselves and their neighbors. People of good will may long to shed their fears of the unknown, reject false assumptions, and enter into relationships with their neighbor, but for this to happen, we must trade in the shallow break room chatter for more informed dinner conversations and long talks on the front porch.
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