Episode 10 – Fighting Battles Together

We were not created to fight life’s battles on our own. We were created for community, and humans are at their best when men and women pursue God’s mission together. On this episode of Where Ya From?, Carolyn Custis James shares her personal experience with gender inequality and learning about injustices toward women around the world. These experiences led her to not only become an advocate for women, but to develop a robust explanation of why men and women need each other to both survive and thrive the ups and downs of life.

Episode 9 – The Bible and Social Justice

If you and I were to read through the Bible, would we find a God who is only concerned about saving souls? Or would we discover a God who’s concerned about both the spiritual and physical wellbeing of humanity? What does the Bible say about being socially active and pursuing justice? Today, Dr. Esau McCaulley shares his origin story with Rasool, and they end up in a discussion about the creation of the term “social gospel” and how that term affects how we read the Bible today.

Episode 8 – Mental Health, Black Dignity, and The Importance of Humor

The brain is an important part of the body. So why is there often a stigma related to pursuing brain health? And why do people often avoid getting the help they need? And what if there are things in all of our lives that are harming our mental health? Today, Rasool asks Dr. Christina Edmondson Where Ya From and ends up in a practical conversation about mental health, black dignity, and the vital role of humor in healing from trauma.

Episode 7 – Colorism, Microaggressions, and White Supremacy

Everyone struggles or has struggled with issues of identity. Maybe it’s the way we look or the amount of success we have achieved or perhaps we want to change who we are to please someone else. The question “Who am I?” is fundamental, and when we allow others or our culture to answer that question for us, it can lead to devastating consequences. Today, Rasool asks Ekemini Uwan “Where Ya From” and discovers how the ideology of white supremacy impacted not only the way she viewed herself, but also how combatting this ideology led to her to become an anti-racist.

Episode 6 – Woke Church

At some point, all of us feel like we have to code-switch–to hide the real us or keep our opinions to ourselves. But unlike those of us who are simply trying to avoid an argument—maybe with a parent or friend— when it comes to issues of race and culture, code-switching is a method of survival. Today, Rasool asks Dr. Eric Mason Where Ya From, and ends up in a conversation about code switching, Biblical politics, and what it means to be woke.

Episode 5 – White Awake

We all have blindspots in our lives–beliefs, values, and assumptions that we’re not aware of– and many of these blindspots can cause serious damage to us and others. On this episode of Where Ya From, Pastor Daniel Hill, shares about some blindspots in his life related to issues of race and justice, and the confrontations with others that began Daniel’s journey of becoming what he calls “White Awake.”

Episode 4 – Hip Hop and Ethics

What kind of beauty speaks to you? Music? The written word? Artwork? Film? What is it about that type of art that captures your imagination and speaks to you in the deepest way? On this episode of Where Ya From, Brady Goodwin Jr (aka “Phanatik”) shares his story of becoming an influential rapper, and how his love for rhythm and rhyme led him to understand how hip hop has shaped the history and ethics of modern culture.

Episode 3 – Intersection of Faith and Culture

How far can a Christian blend into the culture before they go too far? How far can a Christian adjust to the culture before compromising Christian convictions? On this episode of Where Ya From, Dr. A.R. Bernard shares his story of discovering Christianity not as a religion, but as a culture. And how his discovery led his church to address the issues of gentrification, low-income housing, and other socio-economic issues affecting many communities in the United States.

Episode 2 – Finding Real Friends

Finding real friendships can be difficult and experiencing true community can feel impossible. So what does it look like to find a true friend? To be one? What does it mean to be truly known and accepted by another person? On this episode of Where Ya From, Kristen “KB” Newton shares her story of struggling through relationships, and how that struggle led to founding HEARTConvos–an organization that helps people build authentic relationships through having hard conversations.

Episode 1 – Where Ya From?

Our hometowns, cultures, and family-experiences shape us. Two people can grow up in the same city, but because of their different neighborhoods, perceived race and other influences, can grow up in different worlds. Today, Rich Perez–a pastor with a robust and diverse background–describes the many layers of his life, and how these diverse experiences have offered a unique vantage point to discuss how majority and minority cultures can work together for the good of their neighborhoods.