Dear CPC Community,
When we gathered for our recent Coffee Hour to share about “Getting Free,” the spirit was light and playful, yet contemplative and revealing. About 17 members and friends pondered and shared on the topic of “What’s keeps you from being absolutely free?”
In this time of social restrictions due to the lingering global pandemic, actions that threaten human liberties in reproductive justice and voting rights, and daily mass shootings…this seemed to be a pertinent and relevant reflection question. A question of this kind, with the right timing can renew our energies and send us in a direction of positive movement toward justice-making. It works. It really does!
In case you are wondering what about the responses to this broad invitation to consider one’s restraints, the following is a list. Here’s what your community shared.
- The tyranny of technology; too into my iPhone!
- Other people’s expectations on me
- Fear of something new
- Being a senior; a matriarch of a family. These may not be “everyday” responsibilities, but adult children and grandchildren…
- Seeing the world through the lens of living as a white, heterosexual man. Sometimes, just not being able to see the perspective of others through that lens
- A career; without money, you’re not totally free
- Identity, working in a profession for so long; knowing exactly where I belonged. I am not so sure now
- Political systems; guns, loss of abortion rights, obligations. I like some obligations because they give my life meaning and focus
- My dog, I love my dog! Constant responsibility, may sound trivial but…
- Social expectations. But we bend with it. It is what it is
- Self imposed restrictions due to personal conscience. I have a conscience
- The weight of bearing the suffering of loved ones and not being able to help relieve them
Those gathered continued to connect in supportive ways, affirming each other’s responses, throughout the session. This is what came up when asked the next question. My respected colleague recently asked this question, “What new openhearted future is GOD inviting YOU to embrace?” The wisdom, rejuvenation and insights were shared in a perpetual flow! Listen up:
- Authoring the great American novel
- Expanding community
- Helping me to know what I am being an instrument of
- Being assertive when it is for the good
- Being less judgmental, more patient, less controlling with children
- To join this church, dig deeper and participate in good activities.
- DC Statehood, everything matters
- As an older person, the desire to “give back”
- To reap what we’ve sown
The afternoon closed with highlights of our time, together.
“I loved the uninterrupted listening. While it takes intentionality, I could do this regularly. It would probably have preserved some of my relationships.”
To model an effective way of getting what you want, I asked for appreciations of my leadership among the group, as well. And I got it!
“I am so delighted that you are doing this. I love your leadership style.”
“I love your singing from the pulpit.”
Deepest appreciation for Carolyn, Molly, Carol, Kris, Bruce, Nancy, Harold, Mary, John, Peg, Serena, Don, Emily, Magda, Aurora, and Allen…as gathered community of change-makers.
To quote a character who brightened the afternoons of the “Boomer’s” childhoods…that’s all folks!
See you Sunday, July 10th for another Coffee Hour Conversation: “Teach-in: Joyful Community Building 101” Come and learn about the “Powerhouse” and the “Tree-shaker and Jelly-maker”. This teach-in will inspire new skills and hope for cultivating alliances in your community building efforts. Bring your openhearted enthusiasm for a rich exploration with your faith community!
Bye, for now.
Rev. Aubra Love