the gospel according to broadway

“Authenticity is a collection of choices that we have to make every day. It’s about the choice to show up and be real.” — brene brown
“The privilege of a lifetime is to become who you truly are.” — carl jung


What does your most authentic self look like? To put it another way, what is your “why?”

Paul’s letter to the newly formed Christian community in Galatia has these words (Gal. 5:1,13-16 paraphrased), “In the life that Jesus the Christ lived, you were shown what it is to be free, no longer slaves to one another, no longer slaves to greed or self-interest or power. These things are captivating. They enslave us. But we are meant for the kind of freedom that connects us with one another and all creation. We are enveloped in love as we risk showing up and loving others. As the great commandment says, ‘love others as we love ourselves.’”

Naomi Shihab Nye writes in her poem “Famous,”

…the river is famous to the fish.                                                                                            

The loud voice is famous to

which knew it would inherit the earth before anybody said so.                                          

The cat sleeping on the fence is famous to the birds

watching him from the birdhouse…      

I want to be famous to shuffling men
who smile while crossing streets,                            

sticky children in grocery lines,                                                                                      

famous as the one who smiled back.                                            

I want to be famous in the way a pulley is famous, or a buttonhole,                                     

not because it did anything spectacular,                                                                              

but because it never forgot what it could do.

Well friends, our daily news seems to be punctuated these days with the political realities of politics and popularity amidst the physical realities of socio-economic disparities, continued divisiveness, and the realities of real suffering at our southern border, not to mention the anxieties and divisiveness we experience in our denomination, our communities, perhaps in our families. Our digital connections are ever more pervasive and defining of who we are than our actual inter, and intra, personal ones. So, what does it mean to be authentic, to be “famous,” given our political, media-saturated, digital life?

This Sunday, we continue to have some fun with the various musical genres and cultural themes we immerse and entertain ourselves in daily as we explore “The Gospel According to Broadway: If We can Make it There…,” with music from Tommy, Rent, Big River, and Fame.

Hope to see you then!

Rev. Tom McDermott
Associate Pastor of eleven:eleven


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