I’ve seen God around me in some places that aren’t always expected, especially in media and work. Here are three times I’ve seen God in the world in the past two weeks, and they make me feel hope and joy.
- They recognize a higher power, and their understanding keeps expanding.
- They love each other and work and learn together. Justice is restorative, not punitive.
- There is no need to hide or disparage their gifts. Their strengths are legit and they don’t have to wait for someone else to identify them before they use them.
This movie has been uniting people who see it and its model of love and healing. I am inspired by this intersection of love across race, gender, and age where they build bridges. If you go see it, stay until the end of the credits – it’s worth it!
National – This next one is streaming on Amazon Prime: The Season 2 Finale of One Mississippi, the fictionalized story of observational, dark, deadpan comic, Tig Notaro. In the show, her character is sour, dour, and too cynical to mention faith. The way the other characters come to life is a different story. All are flawed and loved and respected. We see characters who are OCD, evangelists, and civil war reenactors. The story arc moves from making fun of them, to respect, acceptance, and transformation as Tig deals with trauma from her childhood. It is one of the most powerful stories of how learning to love yourself spreads to your neighbor and your community I’ve watched. God and humanity are strong and present without being actively presented in a preachy way.
Local – My current employment transition has opened up opportunities for me. One was to go to Program Management Professional training. The instructor took the time to tell us about himself. In two minutes, he described his life: he’s retired P&G, his wife has Stage 3 cancer, he’s the father of 4 (3 grown sons and a 17 year old daughter they adopted last year), and he runs a non profit in Hamilton. Throughout the class, he gave examples of grace at work during some trying times, like when a team had lost hope, or a leader was off the path and affecting the employees. Not once did he name Jesus or God in the class, yet his demeanor was one of someone at peace with himself who found his true calling. What a role model! I wonder if people can see my faith when they talk to me?
Bonus – Remember our program, Restoring Conversations and what a remarkable way it taught us to communicate? I went to A Small Group (ASG) Intensive with my teen on Saturday, and we were present with 25 other community members, abuse and cancer survivors, educators, and business leaders to practice the techniques and find ways to use them in real life. We didn’t talk about God, yet being there sure felt like the best parts of church. We were vulnerable together and connected. Teen and I are planning to do podcasts using ASG techniques before she goes to college – maybe saying it here will get us going to start recording. Let me know if you’re interested in being a guest!
Where are you seeing God around lately in surprising places? What’s giving you hope and joy? Please let me know in the comments, or let’s chat when we meet again.