Summer Book Study!
Have you noticed that in our world today there are certain topics we struggle to talk about? We don’t want to bring them up because we either know someone thinks differently than we do, or we assume that they think differently than we do, so we just don’t talk about it. The first thing that comes to mind for me is, politics. It’s something that permeates our society, and yet, we find ourselves not wanting to even bring it up with anyone we think may be in a different party than us because we know it has real potential to cause an argument, so if anything we even think could be “political” comes up, we shut down, or walk away from the conversation.
Have you ever wanted to change that? To be better able to address topics that are difficult to discuss? To know how to talk to someone of a different political party? Well, I am offering an opportunity to learn some of this over the summer via a book study group.
The book is, I think you’re wrong (but I’m listening): A Guide to Grace Filled Political Conversations by Sarah Stewart Holland and Beth Silvers. These two women are politically different. One is a Republican and the other is a Democrat. This book comes after having a well-established podcast called “Pantsuit Politics” where they set out to have discussions with one another. We usually see on news programs where people come on television and share their opinion, and there is often yelling if people are there with differing views, but these women approach it differently. Instead of yelling, they talk. They take an issue, and break it down. They move beyond the “party line” of their particular party to talk about the facts. They study the issues, present the history and talk about where each “side” comes from in their ways of handling the particular issue. The goal is not to change the other person’s mind or to get them to switch political parties, it's to talk, it's to learn.
After having done this for quite some time, and having learned some things in the process, they wrote this book together. In the book, they call readers to a time of self-reflection; part one is titled, “start with you.” In part two, “turn your eyes outward,” they give tools for how to listen to someone, and how to come to conversations with the goal of learning, and of hearing, and not to have the goal of changing the other.
So, this summer, we will talk about this book, and learn from these women. There will be three sessions offered, and for each session, you will have the choice of joining in person on a Thursday evening or online via zoom on a Sunday evening.
If you have ever had these tense conversations and would like to find a way to have more productive conversations, or would like to join us for other reasons, please get a copy of the book and join in! The book can be found on Amazon and is available on the Kindle as well!
My hope is that we will be better-equipped to talk to one another, and to hear one another so that we can engage in grace-filled conversations about topics that may otherwise scare us!
Here is the schedule the sessions and which chapters we will cover:
All sessions will be at 6:00pm
Thursday, June 17th in the Pavilion or Sunday June 20th on zoom: Chapters 1-4
Thursday, July 15th in the Pavilion or Sunday July 18th on zoom: Chapters 5-7
Thursday, August 12th in the Pavilion or Sunday August 15th on zoom: Chapters 8-10
I hope you will be able to read along and join us!