I remember I was once leading a program, the Chicago Urban Program, and someone who wanted to work with that program gave me a list of things they wanted to learn. Reggie Williams, Assistant Professor of Christian Ethics at McCormick Theological Seminary I want to suggest, as this comes to a close, that the goal is not to eradicate fear from the world. We’re going to do something to stop it and do a little part. + The Story Table takes a theme from FULLER magazine and brings it to life at everyone’s favorite conversation place: the dinner table. If you drive down the street and get pulled over, many of us are afraid for many reasons, but I keep thinking, “If I didn’t have papers, what would this be like?” I would make sure all my tail lights were perfect . I mean, we’re family, so we can just show up at their doorstep in Uganda and Kampala, and say, “Hey, brother, I’m here for a couple of weeks. It’s probably everybody’s fear. It’s going to be uncomfortable and it’s probably not going to be super fun, but what I’m feeling that we are being called to do in the city of Chicago is to be stewards of the power and the privilege that we have, to cultivate this dissatisfaction so that we can start to be changed. He said, “No, pray for me.” I’m driving, I’m praying. Let me just invite you to engage with each other and/or to engage with people at the table, so let’s have the hand on the right. I’m just curious, when you hear that kind of narrative, what comes to your mind as maybe a fairly recent experience of someone in your own circle, family, friends, people in your congregations? I think that for me as her mom, what we’re trying to do, what we’ve always done because my parents did it for me, was try to tie in language of baptism with her. Hello Select your address Best Sellers Today's Deals Electronics Customer Service Books New Releases Home Computers Gift Ideas Gift Cards Sell John Perkins often says that for some reason it’s been okay for years to be a Christian in America and be a bigot. What are you doing with these young people here?” They said, “You don’t know what’s going on, so keep going.”, By this time about seven more squad cars had shown up, and I said, “I heard you talking to them. Part of why we can have a topic tonight like faith in a culture of fear is that we do have a culture of fear, not just individual experiences of fear, but patterns of fear and histories of fear, tribal fears that are existent. I’m the pastor,” and they said, “F—[expletive]!”. Marshall: To embrace the future and go into it. Communities have been habituated to know themselves and what society says of them by fear. Seemingly impossible. That was an extraordinary moment. Faith does not come from us, but is a gift (Ephesians 2:8–9), and is a fruit (or characteristic) manifested in our lives through the Holy Spirit (Galatians 5:22–23). They’re afraid to come to our church. Ooter's Place and Other Stories of Fear, Faith, and Love, Karl El-Koura, Auto-Édition. I love how this story encourages people to overcome fear. All rights reserved. For a black man, driving while black in Chicago often is something to be feared. There’s a problem. That’s not miscommunication, that’s actually entitlement. When you think about the theoretical threat being actualized, what do you think of? And they know what they’re going to do about it, too. It was a powerful experience for me about ministry, but it was also a recognition that those of us in ministry, especially those of us in pulpits interpreting Scripture, have got to remember the power that we have to either use the Scripture as bread and as a way to increase faith and wholeness and healing and justice, or we can misuse it as stone, which had been clearly her experience. I have a friend who, when his kids were little and they were having anxieties as many children do, about monsters under the bed or in the closet or whatever it might be, they as a family established a practice of what they called charging the darkness. . That’s my reality. So it’s not to escape, it’s to remind and to remember and to send out. Reggie: There are some important elements to fear. I think when fear works as an obstacle to our being able to be with each other, then we have some serious problems. There’s nobody that knows where we’re going to be in the year, there’s no one that knows our dreams like you, so everything from meaning to safety, to actual safety. Mark: For you it was that intersection between the lived experience that already had taught you it’s not about happily ever after, and the text. Shannon: Yeah, I think that is what church is supposed to be about—that practicing and rehearsing the way God understands the world and the way God sees us, so that we can go and try to live that way and then come back for a refresher all the time. “Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine.” (Isaiah 43:1b, ESV) Zhang Linhao is a bright, smiling 16-year-old from China with an American nickname that suits her perfectly: Star. It makes sense. The Bible App for Kids simplifies Bible stories to help your little one understand and enjoy the Word. That creates its own extraordinary set of complicated narratives. “Where are they coming from? It went from 11 to 17 to 33, and last year we had 44 murders in North Lawndale. I mean, you just feel so inadequate. I said, “How many people that you encounter would you say in a given day actually carry that fear actively?” One of the four said, “I’d say at least 50%.” Another one jumped in and said, “I’d say it’s at least 80.” Now, this was not in a particularly dangerous neighborhood of Chicago. We got to get that back. That was the only thing I had. I am inwardly fashioned for faith, not for fear. But faith is, too. Fear can work in some ways like a gift, a necessary gatekeeper and a goad towards productivity. FEAR. You can be the President.”. I imagine the young women in my community—of course they’re going to be doing things, and looking for things in the wrong places, because they want to know that they matter, that they’re worth something, that somebody loves them. Now, how that translates to those kids who are thinking, “I want to be alive when I grow up,” is the challenge for churches who don’t have youth ministry, perhaps, who don’t have active engagement with young people, but that is the condition of our community and our churches there on the South Side. I was taught in Iowa, “When you have a problem, run to the police.” In Lawndale, it’s run from the police, and there is just the mistreatment. Reggie: Harriet Tubman. He’s got this. Achetez et téléchargez ebook Ooter's Place and Other Stories of Fear, Faith, and Love (English Edition): Boutique Kindle - Genre Fiction : Amazon.fr Mark: I love that pairing of meaning and agency, because that’s such a powerful combination. Do I matter? Then I got a phone call from a woman who was leaving a domestic abuse shelter in Dallas, trying to make her way across the country, and needed some financial assistance for gas. I mean, I had to put away all the seminary language, and talk in other ways about how I understood some of those scriptures. Challenging. Noté /5. Most of the things that we fear will never come to pass. Faith is described in Hebrews 11:1 as being "certain of what we do not see." Reggie: My students don’t fear turning in their assignments late or not turning in their assignments. Therefore, with the rest of us, we just find our place in that culture of fear because—. We’ve got Christianities in the United States with habituated relationship to others that are really dark and negative, so that the faith itself is sinister, and it’s Christian, or it gets a Christian label. GET IT NOW Provided by Ministry Pass. When Christ is in the boat, a storm always comes up. To be eight years old, to be eleven years old, and to have to coach not only your brothers and sisters and neighborhood friends, but your parents on what to do if someone knocks on your door—to be afraid. What was interesting is that the word of prophecy was actually Kendrick Lamar that I heard—, Marshall: “We gon’ be all right,” yeah. I mean, black fear is not the same danger in this context as white fear. What is the fear of the Lord? We’ve got to work to change that, but it’s uncomfortable. He was simultaneously desperate and hopeful, needy and confident. Fear and Faith: Finding the Peace Your Heart Craves.Failure, rejection, sickness, losing a loved one, being alone—the fears we carry are many and heavy. Howard Thurman in the 1940s, his book Jesus and the Disinherited, has a chapter on fear as one of the dogs that have hounded the disinherited historically. All of a sudden I remember that those are the vulnerable, the elderly and the young in our society. “I raise my hand and the dog cowers,” as Thurman says. We’ve been talking a lot about the experience of people who are marginalized, but fear is not only after the election something that people of color in this country have been addressing. Set my alarm clock. Marshall: The kingdom has arrived because obviously everybody’s life matters, but it just seems that the explosion of social media and a lot of even criminal activity is being carried out of people’s sense of trying to declare that “I’m somebody,” and not being able to make the distinction between being famous and infamous. And back to the original question, what is faith? Listening to your conversation and hearing from our students, I really feel that fear has killed faith, and because there is no faith then there’s no fear. — there will be more God-given invitations to do something new. Reggie: Of trust. Honestly, I can’t remember the last time I’ve been fearful, and you’re not talking to someone who’s lived a perfectly charmed life. How can we build a taller wall?” Actually, that’s why I read the Scriptures. We literally have plans in place for each child, telling them, “If your parent does not come and pick you up, here’s what you do.” I didn’t have to go through that at eight years old because my parents had a green card. Sandra: I think from the reference point of my community—the northwest side, in the Humboldt Park-Hermosa area—it would be immigration and status. Each story is briefly summarized and the reference where it can be found in Scripture is listed for your own personal study. It’s an example, I think, of the fact that the tension that fear often brings out is this contrast between what we know is a psychological experience on one level, and on another level is actually a very physical, real threat, like real things really do happen to real people in real time. It works in both directions. 4. We can start kneeling more, praying more, and stop just being upset and uncomfortable. Marshall: Reggie, you know what’s interesting is that this was happening all over the country the Sunday after the election—obviously the fear in certain communities, in my community. Is it that we accept Christ so that we can then become moral people and make it into heaven? ** Pictures and images designed using resources from Pixabay.com and Freepik.com. Despite a lifetime fear of drowning, Mary found herself surprisingly at peace. The interesting thing about fear, as we all know from our own experiential point of view, is that there’s no one in the world who knows a fear-free life. We started fasting every Wednesday, and praying, and asking God to lead us, and those kinds of things. Suffering doesn’t have the last word. Sandra: Right, if that culture of fear is created, a culture of scarcity, then the rest of us find our place and we end up fighting one another, trying to figure out our place in the whole thing. It denies the hope that God will take care of us no matter what trials we come up against. I don’t care if you’re Latin, Asian, black, Caucasian, most of us in this room had a grandmother who was praying. It was made up of people who had migrated from the South, some of them barely literate, and a researcher came in, wandered into the congregation—it was a storefront church—and wrote a book called Filling the Spirit. Faith has to be a “be strong and be courageous” outlook toward the future. You can see it in our news, you can see it in how we teach, you can see it in how we prepare people to grow up—we have this culture of fear. I want us to begin by just thinking about words that we associate with fear. We’re thankful for Marshall Hatch Sr., who is the senior pastor of New Mount Pilgrim Missionary Baptist Church. It can paralyze our spirit, damage our relationships, and hinder our faith. I hope that part of what we take away is an opportunity to continue to reflect in our own lives—as I do, I think, almost every day—to consider what are the fears that are in me? Ooter's Place and Other Stories of Fear, Faith, and Love is approximately 43,000 words (175 pages). But the effort to show the rest of the world black humanity creates great anxiety in white people. There’s the connection between vulnerability and a request for safety. We got her what she needed, filled up her van, and right before she was leaving I said, “Now, wait a minute, who told you to call me? It always has, but it just got a little highlight on it. Here then we must do something about those fears. She was adorable! Fear is a spirit, and when it turns into paranoia and panic and paralysis, we only give fear power and we don’t exercise our faith. Our faith is meant to overcome our fears, and so whenever we feel afraid we should ask the Lord to increase our faith. It’s a warm day, my windows are down, and I see two squad cars up on a curb, with four 16-year-old kids there, one girl, three boys, and these police officers are screaming and yelling at these kids. I’ve been thinking about it in particular through the lens of a story about a woman named Sherry, who I met about 10 or 15 years ago. It was interesting today, I was in a coffee shop and I sat down at a table next to four Chicago policemen. I keep my eyes open when I pray, it’s okay, good. I was driving down 16th Street, which is a pretty rough street in Chicago on the West Side. If they start to look at their lineage and their history, where is God? I would recognize her voice immediately. She had the quietest voice I’ve ever heard, so I would have to just lean so close to even hear her. One of the Greatest Stories of Fear in the Bible Summarized. Mark: The life of faith in the middle of fear . It’s too bad that Otis is not here, because he struck the right tone that morning. Because stories teach us far more effectively than any objective lessons. In some communities, there are legitimate threats. Like you were saying the pastor said, “You were there in that,” and so somehow in the midst of this you are here with us. They don’t want to stay in this lifestyle, but I wonder, where are we in our society? Then I grabbed her hand and she just said, “We’re going to be okay, we’re going to be okay.” It was after hearing that encouraging story, the sermon in which Otis said, “We have been through this, and this, and this, and this. Obviously I’ve had to deal with my white privilege, living in an African American community, because I walk in a room and some things change. Mar 22, 2013 - It's our first full day in Oklahoma. I remember very distinctly hearing from you, Coach, when I worked with InterVarsity and would bring students to Pastor Hatch and to Coach in the community. I still try to imagine a local pastor, co-pastor of Ebenezer in the midst of a great social movement, with the FBI director declaring you the most notorious liar in the country. So therefore they don’t belong. Obviously, fear is contagious. I’m going to do something and then when I do, I’m going to want them to validate that our relationship’s still okay when they can’t even handle the fact that I said what I just said or did what I just did,” so I appreciate that. What can we learn from the faith of others? Achetez neuf ou d'occasion By growing in our faith, fear will find it more difficult to get ahold of us. Hands on the roof, spreadeagle, for no reason—and didn’t get a ticket, numerous times. Faith can deliver us from fear and worry because faith is the opposite of unbelief. Long story short, we’ve been studying this for five years—I’ve read almost everything I can on why there is violence in Chicago—and we decided that we were going to start a little program. She was terrified about what it meant, because she’ll be 16 this summer and she’s already experiencing the fact that, when she walks down a street, men who she doesn’t know feel like it’s okay to comment upon her appearance, that they have some sort of ownership over her very personhood and her body. I wrote her name on a sticky note and put it on my computer, and vowed to pray for her on a regular basis, and I did. “You’ve sat under the ministry of Reverend Jeremiah Wright. Peace is something that has to be understood from Bonhoeffer. He was 19 years old, a teenager, and 300 young gangbangers were at that funeral. We talk about fast to fail, so the culture is, develop something, do it wrong, and learn from it. I literally had my mouth open, like “Oh, wow! It is not a conversation that my congregation frankly even knows that we’re starting to have for the most part. About five years ago I was preaching about the kingdom from Zechariah 8, and in that section it says that young children are playing in the streets where the adults of ripe old age are sitting on the park benches watching them. Mark: Hugely isolating in its own way, yeah. Reggie: Again, just, I don’t think that fear is necessarily a bad thing. Why doesn't God do something to stop the evil and suffering in the world? Very real. Jennifer Wright: I’m Jennifer Wright, a teacher on the South Side of Chicago. There’s the demand for safety that is the cause for battle and wars and so forth, instigated by fears of others. This is not how you do this.” The conversation that ensued afterwards was all about, “I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to come across that way. I’m a pastor down the street, and I don’t appreciate the way you’re talking to these young people.” They said, “What do you mean, talking?” I said, “I heard you use words. Reggie: It’s interesting how that works because did we pick it up, or did they pick it up, or was this a reciprocal deal? Marshall: The context was one of compounded fear. Sandra: I think that creates a culture of fear. It gets more complicated than that, because there’s more that the Bible has to say about good fear and unhealthy fear. I’m having to work real hard these days making sure not just my teenage daughter, but my preteen son too, can see the world through those things and not lose their voices in the process—and claim their authority, because no one’s going to give it to them. Faith to me is embracing the future. I know what he would say, and I want to know what you’re going to say.”, We talked some. Thank you for sharing the conversation. . I mean, how else can we be a faithful community, how else can we say we’re following Jesus crucified and risen, if we’re not willing to head into that fear and be willing to say, “What do we need to change and let go of?”. Lives not dominated by what scares us or brings anxiety, but ones where we are driven by our FAITH. That viral fear of vulnerability from a physical perspective as a young woman is something that is very, very close to home right now for us. A Baker's Dozen of Short Stories Why doesn't God do something to stop the evil and suffering in the world? Rather than using fear to convert people, as Jonathan Edwards in his notable sermon “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God,” rather than using fear to convert, thinking about what your life could be. I remember, interesting story, we have periodic trips we do to Ghana with small groups of teenagers, and their first time we take them through the passport process and take them overseas on their first trip. Then, one day I was walking home from my piano lesson. The man who had been named Rock because of his potential for steadiness began to sink like a stone because of his wavering faith. In our church, we sing the same thing over and over until we believe it, and the worship leader tells his or her testimony—. Reggie: Yes, the story didn’t make the news. It is the only faith that is not superstition and does not let us slip back into fear, but makes us free of fear. Sandra: It’s not an escape, because our church—I like to describe it as a community center that happens to have a congregation on Sundays—we’re doing things, we’re in the community, we’re at City Hall, we’re in these places. It is going to be a threatening conversation for a lot of my folk. Thank you very much. Thank you for that story. She’s going to get up and she’s got the things that she’s going to do tomorrow. I came from a preacher’s family, what can I say? Stand strong on the Word of God, just like Susan did. Sandra Maria Van Opstal, Executive Pastor of Grace and Peace Community. Reggie: There is a problem when my kids do not fear touching that hot stove, there’s something to be concerned about. Sandra: The life of faith in the middle of fear is what changes me, so when I hear things on the news I’m like, “We shouldn’t be afraid. We’re doing great. Lukeeya: I just want to speak about fear in general. The first year we did it with a group of kids, in 2009, the parents almost became obstructionist. Marshall Hatch Sr., Senior Pastor of New Mount Pilgrim Missionary Baptist Church I am so made that worry and anxiety are sand in the machinery of life; faith is the oil. It’s when my kids do not fear running free in traffic that I’m scared. But not just me, everyone is created as one of God’s beloved children, so that also hopefully instills some sort of sense of value in those other folks, too. We’re going to figure this out. I need to protect mine and me,” or when it stunts my ability to participate in what God is doing in society. It’s very seldom that it’s just about my own personal experience. I grew up in a community that Money magazine said was the most dangerous place to live, the worst place to raise kids, across the street from the biggest crack house in my county. I remember when—those of you who are familiar with the Enneagram—I was doing some Enneagram work. Dropping my son off at school this morning, I heard there’s a courier floating around here in Chicago encouraging people in the black community, “If you see a suspected illegal immigrant, call this number so they can get picked up,” teaching us to turn in our friends. Fear is the opposite of faith. Peter was an able swimmer, but he did not rely on that ability now. Reggie: It’s nothing gripping. One thing it would be important to address is the narrative we believe ourselves to be living as Christians. The church that I pastor, there’s an interesting book on the history of the congregation. They’re part of the social landscape, the economic landscape, the racial landscape, the gender landscape. You’re white, you’re male, your fear is that things are changing, and I can empathize with that because there’s a fear of the future. Most people here have no idea this happened. What is this narrative of being a Christian? Fast and free shipping free returns cash on delivery available on eligible purchase. When we are talking about “Build that wall, because what I have is mine. Potential, value, for that officer, perhaps, it’s not so much that other people may not give you the esteem that you’re looking for, but perhaps you might miss the opportunity to be who you should be in someone’s life along the way. They don’t care who they may hurt, so there’s a space that I think the faith community is overlooking because we’re dealing with a generation. That, clearly, is the hope of the gospel that points us to Christ, who is the most vulnerable, the most prone with every possible identification with us to step into and feel his own fears. 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