Faith & Culture Writers Conference: George Fox

I'm taking a quick break from my focus on black theology and culture to attend George Fox University's Faith & Culture Writers conference this weekend.

As any "regular" readers of this blog know, I've been lazy with my writing in the last couple of years.  It's hard to get taken under the wing of a significant, widely-published author, and lose that relationship quickly and without explanation.  When that happened to me, I grieved for a few years.  Admittedly, I allowed that to become an excuse not to try.

More recently, some professors at George Fox Seminary have been encouraging me, and as limited as my time is, I'm finding some new energy to start to work again.  That's exciting, even if my progress is slow.

I'll have the opportunity to talk with some publishers, agents and editors at this conference.  My "pitch" will be bridge-building - finding ways to create dialogue, relationship and even fellowship between liberals and evangelicals.  When those folks come to this blog, they're going to find a recent series of posts about black liberation theology.  Yes, it's for a seminary assignment.  But it's also a subject near and dear to my heart.  And Liberation Theology is hardly a "moderate" manifestation of the gospel message.  But that's the thing...  finding common ground, and creating safe space for dialogue between liberals and conservatives, should not and frankly does not entail finding a milktoast middle ground. WHO CARES ABOUT HEARING FROM PEOPLE WITH NO PASSION?!  When the Spirit moves, the bosom burns (to co-opt a phrase from the Latter Day Saints)!  I want to build relationships with the most PASSIONATE conservatives -- not the ones who don't really care.  And my evangelical friends, the ones really passionate about their own faith, want to talk with real, bona fide, on-fire liberals!

The most beautiful opportunity for engagement and common ground can surprisingly exist in the most polarized fringes... if the Spirit is there to move us to listen.

May we all be "converted" to the gospel of the other.

And hopefully those folks will give me the time of day...

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