*with John Perkins outside the convention center*
“Thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, to all the exiles whom I have sent into exile from Jerusalem to Babylon: Build houses and live in them; plant gardens and eat their produce. Take wives and have sons and daughters; take wives for your sons, and give your daughters in marriage, that they may bear sons and daughters; multiply there, and do not decrease. But seek the welfare of the city where I have sent you into exile, and pray to the Lord on its behalf, for in its welfare you will find your welfare."The central passage for the the Christian Community Development Association (CCDA) conference this year was Jeremiah 29, which also happened to the be one of the central passages for Northside Church's retreat earlier this year. I've spent a lot of time camped out in this passage so far in 2014.
This post could be about of lot of things related to the CCDA conference. I could write about God's provision and the ways I was encouraged, restored, and challenged. I could write about the new friendships I formed with people seeking the flourishing of their cities in the name of Jesus Christ around the United States. Instead I am just going to share some of the words from speakers I heard that challenged me or made me think.
First, in morning Bible study, Coach challenged everyone to read books by minority authors, and not just John Perkins. Take a moment now and think of the last book or article you read that was not written by a white man.
While at Eastern, I was assigned lots of writings by a diverse group of authors, but I must admit that recently I have been reading books that are typical for a member of a PCA church, namely those written by Tim Keller. I accept the challenge for myself, will you consider also adding some minority authors to your reading list?
And now for some quotes, or actually paraphrases. My notes are not awesome because there was so much good stuff being said.
1. Holes in the gospel have accommodated racism and bigotry.... Ain't no room in the gospel for racism, but we have accommodated it. - John Perkins
2. People ask me, "What is the relationship between the gospel and reconciliation?" That's what the gospel is, fool! - John Perkins
3. We are part of the sin we are preaching against. - Theology Panelist
4. The veneer that we call reconciliation creates deeper damage. - Rehabbing Reconciliation Workshop
5. Please beware of paternalism, the sneaking enemy of true flourishing. - Ruth Padilla DeBorst
I could keep going, but those are just a few for your consideration. If you live in Richmond, and want to hear more, I'd love to get together, preferably over coffee. =)
Lastly, check out the CCDA worship team including David Bailey and several others from Richmond praising God in Spanish.