Whether it be theological, practical, or personal, New Wine seeks to transform conflict wherever possible. The key is to “transform” rather than “eliminate,” for not all conflict is bad. In fact, some conflicts are necessary. We work hard to create resources that provide space for people to engage one another with love and charity, despite sometimes deep and abiding disagreements. By going through, rather than around our convictions, or stopping short at them, we can all create space at the table for one another without sacrificing the integrity of our positions. New Wine provides resources to navigate conflict, which is core to New Wine’s mission.
Our various conferences, forums, and journal issues address subjects that involve conflict in one way or another. More specifically, our key areas of engagement, such as faith and science, gender and sexuality, and racial and ethnic diversity, are hotbeds for conflict in many quarters of society.
New Wine seeks to model a charitable spirit of inquiry and a humble, listening posture, as we engage challenging subjects. We also seek to grow and encourage growth in areas of emotional intelligence. All too often, a lack of self-awareness and good self-management skills intensifies conflicts and can put them over the edge.
New Wine will be developing resources in this domain as part of its “Mustard Seed Communities” initiative. We will highlight and unpack Jesus’ beatitude of “peacemaking,” which is not the same thing as “peacekeeping.” Check out material related to our conference titled “Blessed Are the Peacemakers” and related initiatives, including video episodes at “New Wine Tastings” on emotional intelligence and social psychology involving moral intuitions.
Those who are interested in New Wine’s peacemaking work should also peruse our resources in the other key areas of engagement at New Wine, as many of them address key areas of conflict.
Now more than ever New Wine is necessary so that we (followers of Christ) might have the necessary tools to rage against the dying of the light. New Wine is not a ministry but a missional movement that can (and hopefully will) transform the course of history today. But such impact will only be realized through radical and bold leadership… this is why I choose to be a part of New Wine and the work of Dr Paul Metzger and the rest of New Wine’s leadership.
Matthew A. Farlow Ph.D. (St. Andrews University, Scotland) Graduate of Multnomah Biblical Seminary Book Review Editor, Cultural Encounters