This series was created by a group of pastors, poets, and artists from around the country called A Sanctified Art. In making this series, they started by asking questions like, “How can we listen to one another?” “ How do we find connection despite distance?” “How do we create space for compassionate dialogue and for seeking the holy in one another?”
While the challenges of becoming beloved community to one another are endless, these questions are simple. They quickly recognized that all courageous conversations begin with simple questions and the curiosity to truly listen. They landed on the leading question, “I’ve been meaning to ask...” because it conveys intentionality, warmth, curiosity, and consideration. In essence, this question also implies the following statements: “I’ve been thinking about you, and I’ve been wanting to check in… You’ve been on my mind… I haven’t known how to have this conversation, but I’m getting started with a question.” The ellipses symbolize the main objective of this series: to cultivate courageous conversations—and to keep having them, even if we need to pause.
The four weekly sub-themes we’ll use each Sunday in June provide a trajectory for going deeper. They include, “...where are you from?” “...where does it hurt?” “...what do you need?” and “...where do we go from here?” As you can see, these questions aren’t surface level; they invite us to share our pain and seek ways to care for one another. I hope that this series helps us to behold each other as images of the divine. May it help us strengthen our capacity for empathy and compassion. May it remind us of the power of asking unassuming questions. May it show us that courage is rooted in the heart. Through vulnerability and authenticity, may our courageous conversations lead us to glimpse hope, joy, and beauty—and to become the community God created us to be.