31 Days in which I Am Saved by Beauty – Day 30

A Note of Thanks for a Beautiful Friend

Dear Rachel,

Here’s a scary thought: 

          you are young enough to be my granddaughter! 
(If I’d started having kids really, really young 
and my kids had started having kids really, really young – 
but still!!)

And yet I call you friend. Through these cyber waves only, of course, but friend. That’s what you do, you know. You make friends — everywhere. 

Across all kinds of so-called ‘barriers’ in this world of ours – age/gender/sexual orientation/race/political persuasion/denominations/theological differences. 

Now that last one has proven problematic at points, I know that. You’ve taken a few too many brickbats for my taste. But you’ve handled every single one with grace, honesty, openness. And that is a very rare thing in this world. Very rare indeed. 

You consistently choose to take the high road and you do it with intelligent humility, which is a killer combo in my book. You do your homework, you write with skill and good humor, you listen to criticism, if it’s offered with good will and has merit. 

But you refuse to be cowed by hate-mongers, fear-based misinformation, sideswipes, even outright lies. I salute you, I admire you, I respect you and your work. 

More than that, I am deeply, deeply grateful for your presence out here in this ever-growing world of technological conversation and community. Yes, community. And you have built a wild and wacky one over there at RHE, yes you have! Lots of voices, most of them filled with grace and intelligence, even when they don’t agree with you. 

And then, of course, there are those others, who are not graceful. At all. Sigh. 

But you see what you’ve done, don’t you? You’ve made room –even for those more difficult voices. AND you’ve built a team – to speak right back to them. Your commenting community is among the most articulate and well-spoken I’ve seen anywhere out here. And there are a lot of really fine friends (and far better writers than I) who are writing notes like this to you today. We write because we believe in you. And we believe in what God has called and gifted you to do — on your blog and through your books.

Because we want you to be encouraged today. To know that what you do and what you say and who you are — all of it, all of YOU is valuable to us and to the building of the Kingdom of God in this time, in this place. You are a great gift to the church, Rachel. A great gift. 

So thank you for being brave. Thank you for using that good, good mind God gave you. Thank you for taking on the tough topics, for facing into your fear, for speaking truth and love with well-chosen and wise words. 

Your publisher didn’t choose me as a team member, but I am one anyhow. I have ordered the book and I look forward to reading it, reviewing it, sharing it. 

May you be blessed this day – and every day – by the steady and steadying presence of our Savior. And may you always stand ready to, “give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have…with gentleness and respect.”  

Because that is exactly what you are doing. And you do it so very, very well.

Blessings,

Diana

Joining with a long list of other bloggers in a secret synchroblog to honor Rachel Held Evans on the day of her book launch. You can read all the others over at Jessica Goudeau’s great blog, “Love Is What You Do.” (Isn’t that the greatest blog name ever??) Just click on these sentences and you’re there.

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Comments

  1. Linda Chontos says:

    I am always so behind on everything Diana in this bloggy community Diana. This is so beautifully said. I think I need to get to know Rachel.

  2. She stirs things up, Linda – but she does it with intelligence and kindness. And she’s taken the road from super conservative to pretty liberal. I do not always agree with her, but I respect her voice and admire her courage.

  3. “But you see what you’ve done, don’t you? You’ve made room –even for those more difficult voices. AND you’ve built a team – to speak right back to them. Your commenting community is among the most articulate and well-spoken I’ve seen anywhere out here.” Loved this line. Great post!

  4. Thanks so much for coming by and saying that – this was a fun project to participate in – thanks for organizing it.

  5. I want you in my corner…

  6. I am most definitely in your corner, Sandy!!