Reflecting on Faith and Politics

Use the following piece as a reflection for the video, "Stacy Rector: Faith and Politics". Feel free to think critically about the questions...

Reflecting on Faith and Politics

Use the following piece as a reflection for the video, "Stacy Rector: Faith and Politics". Feel free to think critically about the questions individually, or use them in a group discussion.

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Invitation to Transforming Solitude


In South Africa, 1976 was a big year. On June 16, townships became frenzied as students took to the streets in protest against the educational system. Two months before, Desmond Tutu had been on silent retreat. In the silence, he began to sense in a new way the urgency of the oppressive educational system in South Africa. From a place of retreat Tutu wrote a letter to the prime minister asking him—begging him—to act in a different way. The letter warned the prime minister that the streets were going to erupt in protest. Tutu’s letter was ignored.


We come to see the world more clearly in silence and solitude. Tutu’s prophetic glimpse came to him in solitude. It is in solitude that I can see my marriage more clearly. In solitude I can better see how I am living, how I have hurt people, and how I need to make amends. Perhaps you have experienced these insights in silence and solitude as well.


I invite you to open yourself to receive the transforming gifts of solitude—rest, refreshment, and renewal—that you may be recommissioned to participate in God’s mission. I invite you into the discovery that you are not on your own. I invite you to enter into a personal knowledge of God’s compassionate heart through intimate interaction with God in the silence. I invite you to begin stepping into this experience. Start with short moments of solitude. Don’t try and fill the moments, just leave them empty. Maybe you take an hour to sit and do nothing but be with God.


Henri J. M. Nouwen writes, “Solitude is the furnace of transformation.” Ask Christ to be with you as you take your first step into solitude. Open yourself to receive Christ’s invitation to transforming solitude and let him show you the way.

From P. 53 of Invitations of Jesus. © Copyright 2014 by Trevor Hudson. All rights reserved.


© 2016 The Upper Room®. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce without permission.

Reflection Questions:


1. Often, people are either more action-oriented or more spiritual. Is that true for you? If so, what are ways in which you can attempt to grow in your area of weakness? How can you help others grow in the area of your strength?
2. Stacy Rector describes a necessary tension and conversation between spirituality and politics. In your experience, how does faith shape or inform peoples’ political views? How could the relationship between spirituality and political action become more fruitful?
3. “Solitude is the furnace of transformation.”  How will you make room for solitude in your life this week?


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