This moment does not call for cheap unity, but for a clarified division.
There are plentiful reasons to question whether white American Christians, as a group, learned the right lessons following the so-called “War on Terror.” Our default settings have not changed.
In these moments of impeachment, the court prophets have lined up to defend the president, led by a few prominent, white evangelical leaders – none more outspoken than Dallas pastor Robert Jeffress.
The urban neighborhood where we have chosen to live is not always joyful. My heart has been broken more than a few times. But this place and its people have been my salvation.
Sustained, uninterrupted attention is an unusual gift, both to ourselves and to others. It may be the thing that saves us. The moment of pure attention contains within it the possibility of a future worth having.
Baldwin’s “mystical” solution to the lies of white supremacy is immensely practical. Such spirituality looks like organizing our communities to attend to the political and economic wounds our nation inflicts and to bring into practice a community that is at once more grounded and more beautiful than we have dared to imagine.
Despite their disturbing, even demonic, histories, both white supremacy and nationalism are back. Now they are fused with Christian zeal, a mixture that has only ever been – and will only ever be – toxic.
I have a role, just as each of us who gets caught up in the in-breaking of God in the world has a role. But that role only has meaning in the context of a community that struggles together.
In Fire by Night, author Melissa Florer-Bixer invites us to encounter the God of the Old Testament in new ways. Joining in God’s liberative work in the world is an urgent matter, which makes the patient care of reading these old, old faith stories all the more important.