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Beyond TV

I think I have confessed before that I like to watch TV in my down time, so I am not at all trying to appear like I do not love me some binge-watching on a long weekend.  The new Netflix feature "play something" got me thinking, however, that there can be too much mindless viewing.  Before I am willing to watch just anything, perhaps it is time to look around at my other options.  After all, there are a ton of possibilities in books and blogs and podcasts.  Just like Elena did last week, I thought I would share some media I am learning from these days in the hopes that you would also share and we could all expand our bookshelves and playlists.

I love a good old fashioned book list, even though I do not consume books as fast as I accumulate them.  Most of my reading is centered on faith as I seek understanding for the questions in my own mind and those posed to me by friends, colleagues, and people seeking guidance.  That said, the books can kind of be all over the map in terms of topic and theology, and not everything is faith based, because I enjoy variety.  Here are a few I have been reading over the last year:
I am less inclined to follow blogs or podcasts, but there are a few I read or listen to sometimes.  Again, these reflect a variety of perspectives and topics.  The first one has nothing to do with faith or wise counsel, it is just a favorite of my daughter's and so I listen with her, and that is a real treat!
Finally, the truth is that I--like most of you--also scroll through social media on a regular basis, so I thought I'd share some of how I try to learn and grow even in that arena.  In addition to following my friends, church, and favorite brands on social media, I intentionally follow some other voices to help keep this space from becoming an echo chamber of like ideas.  This choice means I have something to contribute to the conversations my adult children start and something thoughtful to say when others ask my opinion.  Most of all, choosing to listen to different voices helps me to process how I think and feel about any number of topics and ideas in the quiet of my home with the God I love also informing my point of view.  I will not agree with everything I see, but sometimes the topic that makes me uncomfortable, or point of view that makes me fume, creates space in my mind and heart for God to show me something true.  Here are a few I follow on Instagram:
  • Ashley Abercrombie @ashabercrombie
  • Black Liturgies @blackliturgies
  • The & Campaign @andcampaign
  • Ibram X. Kendi @ibramxk
  • Ashton Whitmoyer-Ober @enneagramashton
  • The Gottman Institute @gottmaninstitute

Please comment with what you are reading, listening to, and following in this season.  One of the greatest values of storytelling (books, blogs, podcasts, or posts) is that it helps us to see the world from different points of view, and that helps us build empathy, and that helps us love our neighbors better, and that is key to following Jesus!

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