A Community of Voices #Goingthere, #Ferguson

We may grow weary of conversations about diversity and the noise of riots and lootings. But in Ferguson, there are less sensational things happening amongst the upheaval too. Things like peacemakers who quietly hold hands, making a chain of human bodies to stand between the civil unrest and armed forces. There are neighbors who serve meals, or water, to those nearby. There are communities who get up every morning, after a night of looters trashing businesses, and with their brooms and bags, they clean up. There are prayer warriors. Ones who gently grab a shoulder of another, black, white, red, or whatever, and they are bending a knee in the middle of streets to pray. There are even police officers joining hands and bowing heads.

 

ferguson holding hands

 {Photo Credit at Saint Marks Church holding hands in prayer: Lisha Epperson, photo of Captain Johnson, below: Jennifer Dukes Lee}

And there is a small community of writers, who are #goingthere–to Ferguson. To witness. To feel. To also pray. To take their aching hearts– there– because God has pulled them in that direction and who knows what any of it means? Except maybe, they may hear His heartbeat for one milisecond above the clatter of helicopter blades and newsmen or newswomen reporting tantalizing topics. That they, and we, may hear that still small Voice as we strain to listen through the whirlwind, through the wounds, through the roaring crowds, and into the quiet of our souls. And might we hear, ever so slightly, the way in which we should go? Perhaps that way will take us to the altar carrying our good gifts, only to find a brother or sister who has something against us, and instead of keeping our good gifts, we lay them down, leave them, and go, so we can be reconciled?

 

We want to carry our gifts lightly, offering these meager words for lack of much else. And as our co-visionary, Amy Breitmann wrote, we quietly offer our hand in it’s place. 

 

Ps. Deidra Riggs, Jennifer Lee, Lisha Epperson, Nish Weiseth, and Preston Yancey are in Ferguson compelled by God to #gothere. May we keep them in prayer. {Below is a picture of them praying with Captain Ron Johnson of the Missouri State Patrol. Used with permission.}

Ferguson Capt Ron Johnson

 

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In Case You’re Wondering What Is #goingthere, Here Is One Piece At The Heart Of It {and the initiator of it}:

Deidra Riggs writes in her post titled This Is Me, Caving In Regarding The (Continuing) Race Relations Conversation,Truth: I don’t always like writing/talking about the black/white race relations Going There stuff. I imagine you feel the same way about reading it. I feel sometimes like Moses: ‘Really, God? THAT’s what you want me to talk about? Do I have to?’ I get all agitated and start squirming in my seat and, like a fly caught between the window panes in August, the buzzing keeps going.”

 

A Couple Of #goingthere Posts That Made Us Think:

**Lisha Eppersons’ “Little Girl Blue: Why My Daddy Taught Me to Hate” story of growing up in a black Muslim home

**Tonia Peckover’s “Of Ferguson and Francis” makes us think about the issue of when “we are truly confused by the reactions of others”

**Deidra Riggs was going to hang up the #goingthere hashtag and call it a day, until this

 

**NEW* * When We Want To Write A New Story:

**Osheta Moore talks about “a subversive truth to writing our stories when we write out hard things and let a bit of our comfort die. There’s redemption from the loss, the pain, the wounds,” in “The Power To Write New Stories ” at  Claire J De Boer’s blog

 

Even More Talk About #goingthere:

**Lisa Jo’s interesting read in “I’m a white girl from the South African suburbs and I’m ‘going there’” who grew up at the height of Apartheid

**From Alia Joy, “On Coming Together” in her Asian family growing up in America 

**Jennifer Lee in “I’m A White Girl from Rural Iowa…..and I’m ‘Going There'” despite the lack of answers, asking “what now?”

**Lori Harris’ words about moving her white family into a black neighborhood here , living in “the kind of land no man clings to in his American dream”

**Lori Harris again, asking, “Who can entertain changing the whole world when the groaning on one’s own street is loud enough to make one’s head spin?” when she went there

**Dolly Lee talks about people’s presumptuous perceptions about an Asian American and how they have falsely assumed

**Lorretta Stembridge is “Going There And Beyond” on why she’s “scared” to #gothere

 

For Those Who Are Really, Physically, On The Ground #goingthere {and taking many others in spirit}:

**Deidra Riggs in “When Going there Means Going There”

**Jennifer Lee shares “When ‘Going There’ Means Actually Going There”

**Lisha Epperson tells about it in “Five Minute Friday: Change {Going There in Ferguson}”

**Preston Yancey gives us insight “When We Go Quietly”

 

**NEW** Prayers for Those Who Have Their Feet On The Ground In Ferguson ^^:

**Sandra Heska King prays about barriers, understanding, quiet-ness, and despite color, their skin would be Jesus in this “Still Saturday”

**Sheila Seiler Lagrand shares a prayer of scriptures which include this powerful line:

“We have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us.  We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed.” 2 Corinthians 4:7-9

**Lyli Dunbar shares wisdom on how to “make every effort”

**Elizabeth Marshall’s poetic “A Prayer For My Friends Who Went There”

 

From Our Own:

**Amy goes there with cancer and diversity in her poignant post about how blessed are those who quietly hold out a hand

**Tammy shares her perspective from the deep south and how she found herself listening to the other side through relationships

 

**NEW** The Conversations Continued:

**Amy Hunt grapples with her questions in “on living sheltered and small”

**Kate Motaung is #goingthere because she’s a white girl who married a black man

 

Challenged in #goingthere:

**Deidra writes “A Post For You To Read While I Wait For More Courage” to go there

 

What We Can Do:

**Deidra tries to shed some light on “What You Can Do”

 

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9 Comments on “A Community of Voices #Goingthere, #Ferguson

  1. Friends, thank you for including my simple weekend Scriptural post here in this beautiful compilation of passionate voices. I am so humbled to be included — so many great friends here sharing grace and truth.

    I just wanted to mention that I wrote a post on how to respond to Ferguson with a Missional Heart for missionalwomen.com. You will find it here: http://www.missionalwomen.com/politics/4-ways-to-respond-to-ferguson-with-a-missional-heart

    May God show us the way.

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