Why SoloFide’?

question-markMany people have asked me in these recent weeks why SoloFide’? Why is the most basic question that can be asked of anything we do. So, let me try to answer the question why SoloFide’?

For nearly a decade, I along with you, have seen the numbers of people talking about faith in the church house gradually dwindle. That drift has caused many persons to wonder what might we do to create spaces where we can safely and constructively speak of faith in the public square. I have been playing with different ideas throughout this past decade. In my files are at least six different names and three business plans and webpages.

SoloFide’ came together this fall after spending time in Guatemala. For the first time, I Launchbelieved I had a real plan to bring the conversation of faith back into the public square. I acknowledge there is a big gap between a plan and bearing real fruit. Yet, I would never know if my plan would bear fruit if I did not take action.  So, action I am taking in launching SoloFide’ this week.  Let me know if you would like to join us at the Launch Party, January 30, 6:00 p.m.

The way SoloFide’ ignites the faith conversation in the public square is by fulfilling it’s mission of “Offering life-shaping experiences that meet real needs.” You can see how we accomplish that mission at the webpage http://www.solofide.org. My why became clearer while visiting with Mike Baughman of Union Coffee. His much appreciated tagline crystallized my answer to the Why SoloFide’? when he said SoloFide’ is for “Persons who spiritual and may be religious”.

Diverse PeopleSoloFide’ is coming alive to inclusively invite everyone to the table, the spiritual and religious. When we are all at the table we can have conversation about faith in a safe and constructive way. If its not safe inside the church to talk about all matters of faith, SoloFide’ needs your voice. If it has not been constructive to have a faith conversation in the public square, SoloFide’ needs your voice.

Grace doesn’t distinguish between any of us, it rains on all persons in more ways than we can name. So I birthed SoloFide’ for you, each one of you. Or, as I said to my kids, not I love you, but I love each one of you.  I wanted them to know my love was not divided but was all in 100% for each one of them.

So in the spirit of my faith ancestor, John Wesley, ‘Dallas is my Parish’. The reason I am birthing I want to love each one of you back to the table where your thoughts on faith are welcome. SoloFide’ is for persons who are spiritual and may be religious.

Dallas Skyline

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Published in: on January 27, 2016 at 3:39 pm  Leave a Comment  

The Story of Two Facebook Posts

social_mediaMost people would consider me to be a full participant in the social media dialogue. I am not sure where I fit on the spectrum that ranges from occasional to incessant post. I am sure the clandestine world of Facebook analytics knows.

Yesterday, I posted four times. Let me review my posts in reverse chronological order.

  1. My last post of the day was an Epiphany reflection on our half lit tree and how even the smallest light is greater than any darkness. It received twenty-two kindhearted responses.
  2. The next last post of the day shared some recent and important research from the Pew Group regarding Millennial’s feelings toward the church and how they continue to show a sharp decline in contrast to older generations. It received one comment from one of my older friends (Well, he’s nearly my age).
  3. My second post of the day was a paraphrase of Richard Rohr’s morning devotion. It spoke deeply to me as a man. It reminded me that three IMPORTANT MEN fell to their knees before the vulnerability of God–sleeping in straw among the animals. He clearly contrasted the image of the Three Kings to our 21st century masculine ways of bravado, machismo, along with other chest pounding masculine expressions. Two persons (women) liked it.
  4. My first post of the day thanked those putting together the list of places that will not allow open or concealed carry of weapons in their places of business, stating our intent not to frequent places that allow it. It received fifty-four likes and sixty comments that covered the many views on this hot topic.Gun Control

I am not surprised the issue of gun control brings about such a volume of responses; it’s a very important issue. What sticks in my gut is how two posts, less than ten minutes apart, were received. It seems to me the post that stirred up our anxieties was latched onto like a life impacting breaking news story. The post that offered what I believe is a remedy to what stirs up our anxieties was passed over like acned thirteen year old at middle school dance.

I will let you draw your own conclusions, because you will and should. I am not describing something that happens just on my Facebook page. These patterns are becoming more common in both our face-to-face and digital conversations. All I wonder is:

  1. What do you do so not to be distracted by the anxieties that stir all about us?
  2. Where do you turn to hear voices that apply salve on our overly concerned souls?
  3. How might we collectively reduce the growing anxiety of our culture that is easily stirred in these uneasy times?

Shalom-LargeI would love to hear about your peacemaking ways that soothe your soul and offer salve to your fretful world.

 

Shalom!

Russell

Published in: on January 7, 2016 at 2:16 pm  Comments (2)