I love it when a plan comes together, except I never had one. Proclaiming The Raceless Gospel is my calling and that’s not something I could have dreamed up. Yet, I can see how it could all lead up to this present moment.
What began as a daily blog, The Daily Race, more than ten years ago, is now The Raceless Gospel. Deconstructing race and racialized identities while diving deeper into baptism’s implications for Christian believers as expressed in Galatians 3:27-28 is my work now.
In fact, it has always been my work and witness. I just did it on the side, on my breaks and in the middle of the night. A little here, a little there. Now, I do it full time, which is not something I had planned on.
Though it was always in the back of my mind, there was always other work, other people’s work to do.
Almost three years ago now, I began a Doctor of Ministry program that focuses on the work and writings of Dietrich Bonhoeffer and “life together.” Two chapters completed and revised with two more to go, my approved thesis is on The Raceless Gospel.
Last year, Good Faith Media made it an initiative and a podcast, which is now in its third season. This past week, I preached yet again on baptism. It wasn’t planned; it was a part of a scriptural passage that the pastor had been focusing on. It just all came together.
Like “Moses” and me, my life and my calling are coming together. If you have been following me on social media (@racelessgospel), then you know that I have been celebrating Harriet Tubman’s 200th birthday all summer. From Dorchester County, Maryland, her birthplace to Auburn, New York her final resting place, I walked in her footsteps.
An abolitionist, a social activist, a spy, and nurse during the Civil War, she is the consummate freedom fighter. Freeing herself from slavery in the fall of 1849 at 27 years old, she would make an additional thirteen trips back into slaveholding states to free others. She knew early on that bondage was no way to live and came up with a plan.
Tubman is my muse, my matron saint, my North Star in the work and witness of The Raceless Gospel. She is also the embodiment of the freedom I aspire to. I want to move like her, and I want to take people with me.
I am intentionally crossing paths with her, intertwining her life with mine. The same can be said of Clarence Jordan.
A farmer, New Testament Greek scholar, and Southern Baptist minister, Jordan is my patron saint. I studied his “demonstration plot” at Koinonia Farm in Americus, Georgia five years ago. Thanks to a generous grant from the Louisville Institute, I was able to examine his life and the way he led an intentional community.
I made no formal plans for my gleanings. I was just grateful to find a kindred spirit, someone who shared the same passion for integration, refused to conform to the social norms of racism and believed that we were all God’s children.
However, back in May, I was contacted by Sam Hine, who is an editor at Plough Publishing House and guess what? He wanted to know if I would write the introduction to The Inconvenient Gospel: A Southern Prophet Tackles War, Wealth, Race and Religion. Which Southern prophet?
I couldn’t have planned any of this.
The book is set to be released in October and I want to invite you to the book launch. Join me, Russell Moore, and Bren Dubay for “A Demonstration Plot for the Kingdom: Celebrating Clarence Jordan’s Legacy Today” on Thursday, October 27th at 8 p.m. ET.
It would mean so much to me if you would include me in your plans for that evening.
To register, click here.