By Paul Louis Metzger and Derrick Peterson
You'll notice that our New Wine, New Wineskins website has pictures of bridges and tables all over it. Bridges represent spanning divides, while tables are places where people come together for fellowship, for conversation, and for the nourishment of good food. New Wine features dialogues between Evangelicals and Buddhists over potlucks, for example. Our conversations range from metaphysical questions and concerns, to matters of spiritual practices and ethics--including matters pertaining to sexuality and gender. Having conversations at tables over such tough topics as these are how we span cultural divisions.
Just recently we had a conversation about gender and sexuality. It can be so hard having these conversations in our society with people of various backgrounds, experiences, and orientations. So often we no longer see the people with whom we engage, just our own talking points. Our empty words fill up the room, and often it feels there is little air left to breathe for the real, living people interacting with us.
One of our conversation partners over the years has been New Wine's associate director, evangelical theologian Dr. Brad Harper, who has shared openly with us about his deep and abiding relationship with his son, Drew, who is a gay man.
There is no reduction of persons to ideas here. Not only has Brad shared about his relationship with Drew over potluck meals with our Buddhist friends, but also he and Drew have written about it in a book that will be released in the coming months: Space at the Table: Conversations Between an Evangelical Theologian and His Gay Son.
It is with great pleasure that we invite you to head over to their Kickstarter Page to help fund the book, which is already touching so many lives. Ventures such as this are exactly what New Wine, New Wineskins believes in and tries to embody, and it is with great joy that we invite you to continue to interact with us on these difficult but necessary theological and social issues. For it is only by encountering one another in the spaces we live, eat, cry, and experience triumph, that such issues are no longer merely ideas floating about, but gain faces with flesh and blood.