Point of View

I get a lot of email intended to broaden my thinking or deepen my spiritual life: daily devotionals, weekly round-ups, and monthly epistles. They come from pastors, journalists, coaches, and writers, or from newspapers, magazines, organizations, schools, or collectives. I choose what I subscribe to, so most of the time, even when I’m not informed on a particular issue or situation, I’m in a sort of comfort zone for my point of view. 

It’s a surprise, then, when I see an unfamiliar name attached to an organization I support, then read further and realize that within the umbrella of the organization’s interests, there are people whose foundational points of view clash with mine. We share an interest or a belief, but we diverge on something that matters deeply to both of us. 

Does that person have something, anything, to say that I need to read and consider? Would they even read my writing, if my name were on an email in their inboxes?

In the faith world alone, there are plenty of people who share my love for Jesus, but differ on beliefs I hold dear. Will their reflections on scripture, or their application of the gospel to action in the world, resonate with mine? One day last week, I looked up a name and made an uncomfortable connection and decided to keep reading. I found there are some feelings I share with this person about scripture. I want to resist saying, “but…” with regards to our different points of view on interpretation, but I cannot. There is no way to ameliorate theology that excludes, and does it in the name of Jesus. 

Study, then, led me to prayer, for a point of view that truly centers on Jesus, who reached and touched and comforted and exhorted everyone.

Really. Everyone. 

A version of this post appeared in the RevGalBlogPals Weekly e-Reader.

Subscribe to Reflectionary, my weekly Revised Common Lectionary email launching Monday, November 25, with ideas for preaching and original liturgy.