The Skin You Live In Video Series

Taking the first steps towards building a relationship with someone different from you can be intimidating. David Ireland offers practical observations and suggestions for how to become aware of your own foundational assumptions and cultural blind spots, initiating vulnerable conversations, becoming racially attractive, and building bridges across the cultural divide.

Discussion questions are included for these six videos, which were excerpted from messages David Ireland gave at The Navigators’ Leader Development Institute at Glen Eyrie, June 2014. Each video title below contains a link to the discussion questions document corresponding to the video.

Session 1-Really Seeing Ourselves, 21 minutes
One of the hardest things to do is to see yourself for who you really are. In this video series, Dr. David Ireland helps you see how you come across to others from a cross-racial perspective. Once you become more aware of your mannerisms and body language, your assumptions and frames of reference, then you can better respond, correct, or adjust your behavior and become someone who attracts friends from across God’s mosaic.

Session 2-Helping Others See Themselves, 12 minutes
We all have cultural blind spots impacted by how we grew up. It’s natural to think, “My way is the right way” or “the best way,” especially when we haven’t been exposed to the spectrum of beautiful options enjoyed by those different from us. But in God’s kingdom culture, diversity is to be celebrated. In this session, you will learn how to receive coaching and gentle exhortation from others to help expose your blind spots.

Session 3-Having Vulnerable Conversations, 21 minutes
Vulnerable conversations are those in which both parties feel free to ask gnawing questions and explore unfamiliar aspects of the other’s race, culture, or ethnicity. These conversations are key to forming strong cross-race relationships. In this session, you will process ideas for respecting and making space for differences—and even celebrating them!—in an atmosphere of humble curiosity.

Session 4-Becoming Racially Attractive, 17 minutes
If we are to become racially attractive, we can begin by identifying baggage we have inherited from our cultures and perhaps our families. Some of those inherited perspectives, assumptions, behaviors, etc., have probably become burdensome in God’s kingdom. Some of the simple skills you’ll explore in this session include admitting awkwardness, accepting others, applying grace, and appreciating feedback.

Session 5-Building Bridges, 23 minutes
Just as Christ was a ‘bridge’ reconciling us with God, so He calls us to become bridge-builders in the ministry of reconciliation. And some of the biggest ‘gaps’ to be bridged relate to race and ethnicity. Bridge-building must be intentional, such as allowing God and others to challenge and destroy our prejudices, and placing our culture and race below Christ in our identity. In this session, look for at least five practices that build bridges and healthy cross-racial relationships.

Session 6-Crossing Barriers, 18 minutes
“Barriers are deterrents—some self-imposed by our theology, others absorbed by societal patterns and expectations regarding interracial relationships. Barriers must be overcome in order for bridges to be built in God’s mosaic kingdom. Expect some sacrifice and discomfort as you follow in Christ’s footsteps as a peace-maker and reconciler.”

The six videos may be viewed in sequence, or as stand-alone videos: