top of page
  • Writer's pictureDavid Carlson

514 Jesus could have been a prince on a throne. Instead, he denied it. He let it go. Kenosis

Day 514: August 12th, 2021

Jesus could have been a prince on a throne, holding power, riches, and every kind of privilege. Instead, he denied it. He let it go.

Announcement #1:

Future Church:

Celebrating Women Witnesses for Racial Justice-Prayers and Presentations

Mark your Calendars for

August 15, 2021 at 7pm ET - (4:00 Pacific)

Celebrating the Feast of the Assumption

The Assumption is a celebration of Mary's bodily appearance on Earth as a faithful disciple, assumed into heaven in both body and soul. It is a day when Catholics celebrate the importance of women's bodies in theology, consciousness and wholeness. On this feast day, we will celebrate and claim the sanctity of the bodies of black and brown women, many who have suffered and died at the hands of police. We will #SayHerName recalling and honoring God's beloved ones whose lives were cut short in the face of white supremacy and racism. Please join us for this prayerful evening.

Sign up with this link:

Announcement #2

From the struggle for racial justice to healing the planet, a global nonviolent shift is needed more than ever.

On Saturday, August 21 enjoy music from around the world to support the movement for a culture of active nonviolence free from racism, poverty, environmental destruction, and war.

Register to attend Pace e Bene’s For Goodness Sake: Music for the Nonviolent Future, an online music festival featuring scores of artists and brief presentations on the power of nonviolent change.

As part of For Goodness Sake, a live online nonviolence training and webinar exploring the power of music in nonviolent movements will be hosted by Pace e Bene on Friday, August 20. Click here for more information.

Celebrate the power of music to change the world—and support the work of Pace e Bene, Campaign Nonviolence and over 40 local and national co-sponsors working on peace and nonviolence.

If you have any questions about our work, contact Pace e Bene at 510-268-8765 or

Donating by check? Make checks payable to “Pace e Bene” and mail to PO Box F Corvallis, OR 97339

Announcement #3 Justice in Palestine

The Tide Is Turning for Justice in Palestine

It’s time to

Organize, Strategize and Act

Join members of the North Coast Coalition for Palestine on

August 24th at 7pm

Peace and Justice Center

467 Sebastopol Ave., Santa Rosa 95401

To brainstorm on strategies for:

Building support for HR 2590 bill to defend the rights of Palestinians living under Israeli Military Occupation

Bringing a national focus to controversy re: honoring of Israel supporter

Rep. Barbara Lee of Oakland to the Sebastopol Living Peace Wall

Contributing to a national dialogue on:

a) ending the Gaza blockade

b) conditioning aid to Israel on ending occupation and the settlements

c) rebuilding Gaza

d) demanding reparations for Gaza

e) activating the right of return

f) Defending and promoting BDS

Have something to add to the agenda?


We hope to see you Tuesday August 24th

Cynthia Poten, Rebel Fagin, Therese Mughannam

Day 514: August 12th, 2021

Daily Reflection: Good and Bad Power

Letting Go of Power

In her book The Wisdom Jesus, Cynthia Bourgeault describes how Jesus modeled the path of kenosis.

Taken from the Greek word in Paul’s letter to the Philippians (2:5–9­), it means to “let go” or “to empty oneself.” In Jesus, this self-emptying pattern revealed itself as “not love stored up but love utterly poured out.” [1] Episcopal priest and author Stephanie Spellers writes about how Christians in the United States can practice “kenosis” for the common good.

Jesus’s life on earth was a purely kenotic, downwardly mobile path. . . . Jesus could have been a prince on a throne, holding power, riches, and every kind of privilege. Instead, he denied it. He let it go. . . . He consciously chose a path that assured suffering, humiliation, desolation, and finally death on a cross. In response, God lifted him up and gave him glory.

None of this was an accident or coincidence. Jesus entered as he did, where he did, doing what he did, because God needed us to finally comprehend the truth: God is not a sky king who heads an empire;

God is the love that gives itself away for the sake of more love. Jesus could only communicate that point by standing outside the power structures and inviting disciples to join him and discover new life with him on the margins. . . .

In Jesus, God shows us what it looks like to be this vulnerable, humble, and self-giving. In him, we see one who did not run from the things that broke his heart, nor did he first calculate what he could gain from a situation.

Jesus sought instead to give away his life, so he and others might flourish as God intends. . . .

God invites us into a covenant, where by the power of the Spirit we can choose to allow our hearts to break, and then take the pieces—our lives, our goods, our love, and our privileges—and share it all like a broken loaf of communion bread.

Granted, this is a very non-American way of being. Think of the phrases that shape our national identity. We assert our “right” to “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness,” which means we are free—and even expected—to organize our lives around our own individual desires. So much of our American story consists of groups of people protecting themselves and what’s theirs, with a gun or a flag or the cloak of racial, class, or gender privilege.

Jesus’s story is exactly the opposite. In this moment, as we reckon with the limits and consequences of self-centrism, domination systems, and the church’s capitulation to empire, we could lean into the Jesus way.

We could reclaim kenosis, or perhaps claim it for the first time. . . . When you take something you possess—your bread and power, your abilities and identities, your comfort and control, your treasured structures and even life itself—and release your attachment to it and make it useful to God’s movement, you are practicing kenosis.

33 views0 comments
bottom of page