At the Writing for Your Life conference in Raleigh, North Carolina, I attended a workshop led by Jeff Chu, author of ”Does Jesus Really Love Me? A Gay Christian’s Pilgrimage in Search of God in America” It was top notch. An excellent speaker, Chu was honest and humble and helpful. He strove to take away fears that come with writing and to instill hope.
By this time, we attendees started opening up and getting acquainted with one another during “free time.” I discovered that although most of the attendees were pastors or preachers, they did not carry dogmatic attitudes. It was supremely refreshing. They left behind ministries and churches focused only on the opinions of leaders and outdated concepts and practices. They were willing to face their fears to learn how to write and join the conversations today meant to embrace diversity and unite and heal, rather than convert and make a homogenous society of believers, who ultimately portray an us versus them.
There was no us versus them at this conference, that I noticed. We didn’t use our differences as a means for demanding better treatment. The diversity was appreciated and combined to show a big bright picture of an infinite good God.
I barely could get to sleep that night. I was exhausted and riveted at the same time. Sleep finally came about 9 p.m. I woke at 12:45.
12:45 a.m., awake and compliant to get out of bed and start driving home.
Nighttime traffic was much easier than daytime traffic.
Five hours later, I was driving out of Washington D.C. and could see on the other side of the highway lane incoming traffic. I’d just missed morning rush hour.
I made it home just before noon. Dog-tired but delighted to see and hug my cats. Worn but calmed to see my chickens. Drained but filled with the desire to keep living that which has no end, creativity and the sense of belonging to an expanding and generous mind.