Hello everyone! It is hard to believe that it is already September. Before we know it we will be putting out fall decorations and then the holidays will be upon us in no time.
Last week I started a 3-week blog series about how to be a “civil grace giver”. So many things have happened over the last few weeks that I felt compelled to share some thoughts on the topic.
Your homework from last week was to rate yourself on a scale of 1 to 10 about how well you do at being a civil grace giver on social media. How did you do? What can you do today or this week to improve your score? When you think about “social media arguments” do you think anyone has ever really changed their mind because someone “proved their point” online? My guess is that number is barely above zero. However, I do believe that when someone is a civil grace giver and responds out of love a relationship can grow and have the possibility of making an impact that could change a person's life.
Last week I briefly mentioned Follower of One. They are a non-profit organization that helps Christians remember to live their life as a Christ Follower everyday, especially at work. They have a daily podcast that I do my best to listen to every morning. It has helped me do a better job of walking out my faith on a daily basis in a way that matters.
It is helpful to me to listen to their quick 5-minute podcast to help me focus on what matters most. My relationship with Jesus is what matters most to me. When I have that in alignment then I have an opportunity to really be a civil grace giver.
There are so many things going on in the world right now that remembering to do our part to not cause anyone to “stumble” can be an important part of being a civil grace giver.
I am including the link to two different podcasts from Follower of One. These episodes were on a Sunday and a Monday, but they were recorded 3 or 4 weeks apart. The fact that they were back to back and they both resonated with the key idea of being a civil grace giver was one of the prompts that caused me to start this blog series. Typical God timing. I hope you will take the time to listen to them. Please consider subscribing to never miss an episode.
One of the big takeaways from these podcasts would be to really try and listen to others that don’t believe the same as us.
Something that Mike shared that was very powerful to me was:
“The negative representations of us are valid in the eyes of those that represent us that way and let us consider that we may need to do something different so those very people would see the One we claim to follow”.
This is a link to show you all the places you can subscribe to listen to the Follower of One podcast. Also take a moment to check out how you can take a free virtual mission trip to your workplace on their website.
This week your homework will be to see if you can have a conversation with someone that does not believe the same as you and listen to understand rather than listen to respond to prove why you are right. Are you up for the challenge?
At church this week my pastor mentioned something called The Philadelphia Statement which is completely on point as well. I would highly recommend that you read the statement so you can see why I found such value in what they talk about. Here is one brief excerpt from that is powerful:
“If we seek a brighter future, we must relearn a fundamental truth: Our liberty and our happiness depend upon the maintenance of a public culture in which freedom and civility coexist—where people can disagree robustly, even fiercely, yet treat each other as human beings—and, indeed, as fellow citizens—not mortal enemies. “Liberty is meaningless where the right to utter one’s thoughts and opinions has ceased to exist,” Frederick Douglass declared in 1860. Indeed, our liberal democracy is rooted in and dependent upon the shared understanding that all people have inherent dignity and worth, and that they must be treated accordingly.”
I am going to be hosting a monthly call on the 2nd Wednesday of each month at 7:00 pm Central time called the 3-C’s (Charity - Connection - Civility). The call will be an open discussion to help spur on conversation about how we can be civil grace givers in a tangible way. For the first call, we will start with a discussion of the Philadelphia Statement and how to apply it in your life. Then we’ll see where the conversation leads.
If you would like an invite to the call, please message me or you can RSVP on the Facebook event here.
As always, if I can help you with anything please reach out.
Schedule a “get to know each other” Zoom meeting!
Playlists — music can change your mood, enjoy some of the songs that encourage me.
The Identity Key — you can purchase my book on Amazon.