e-letter 2/08/19

As we have journeyed through our relationship series, many times the genre of country music has come up in our planning conversations. I mean, what emotion or relationship does country music NOT sing about? Rejection, love, loss, you name it. There’s that old joke that says, “What do you get when you play country music backward? You get back your wife, your dog, and your truck.” Whether you are a fan or not, these songs get at the heart of human emotion. There truly is a country song for everything.


That fact reminded me this week that there is a country song called “I Wanna Talk About Me,” by Toby Keith. In the song, released in 2001, he details all the ways he listens to his (presumed) romantic partner talk about themselves and their life. She talks about her grandma, her toe nail polish, the run in her hose… really, everything! And finally he says in the chorus, “I like talking about you, you, you, you usually, but occasionally, I want to talk about me!” Have you ever felt this way? I have! And I have another confession: I know I have probably made others feel this way, too! (Oops.)


Communication is the lifeline for all of us in our many relationships. Sometimes, you can be in relationships with others, trying to get a message across to someone, and they won’t hear it! It can feel like Toby singing about wanting to talk about himself. When we think of relationships, we think of talking, but this reminds us that in all our relationships, listening is important too. Communication is more than words, it is presence and paying attention. This country song does a good job of reminding us of this!


Whether we are young or old, married or single, parenting or childless, in wonderful relationships or in rocky patches, communication is central. It is what glues together a relationship, helps move through conflict, and helps us build intimacy. That leaves us with a few questions: how can we build strong, smart, Christian communication? How can we hear our partners, our friends, and our family members as they tell us all the details of their lives? How can we be loving, supportive, and God honoring in our communication?


This week in worship, we will be discussing healthy communication. We will visit the book of James and all its practical wisdom about the power of the tongue and of our words. James tells us that we are to be careful and wise with our words, good listeners, and not to use our words to harm. In this way, James has been called the Proverbs of the New Testament, because he is so practical. I know we will find this to be true as we take a deep dive into this Bible passage, and I am looking forward to gaining the tools to be more Christ-like in our relationships.


Let’s hear Toby and, more importantly, James as they teach us how to be better communicators this week.


See you Sunday!  

Pastor Allee