My mom tells the story that when I was a child I would often come into a room, bouncing up and down, and tell her, “Mom, Mom, I have the best new idea!” I would then proceed to describe my business plan for selling fresh-brewed mint tea at the end of the driveway, or sketch out how to set up a full-fledged post-office in the living room for all the family communication needs.
As an adult, when I come into a meeting room, or into a conversation with a new colleague, I have learned to control myself from bouncing up and down. But I am still filled with that entrepreneurial spirit, and drawn to others for whom creativity and innovation bring excitement as well.
When I look at our current cultural landscape, it is clear to me that the world is changing and that the church is changing. Change can be unsettling or unknown, and we can become paralyzed by it. Or change can call us to our creative and courageous selves. Change can lead us to re-imagining church, to inventing new ways of encountering faith community, and to being prophetic in the work of seeing all people as precious children of God.
It is that courage and passion—joined with entrepreneurial spirit and deep faith—that I see in the faces of the Beatitudes fellows and in the staff and supporters of The Beatitudes Society. I see people who are actively wrestling with the realities of the culture we are living in and being present in the church in transition, while holding an acute awareness of the culture of the communities and world around us. And I see a community that is leveraging opportunities to weave these conversations together, combining the church and the public square—the life of faith being a life active in the world.
It is my honor to be joining this team and the network of people who share a passion for this vision, and I look forward to engaging in this work together. And sometimes I may just have to bounce.