Words are powerful. Whether written or spoken, the words we say to each other carry the power of death and life. They can build others up or tear them down, bringing destruction no illness can achieve. Sometimes it is not an issue of what we say, but how we say it that invokes a forest fire of emotions. How we speak to each other matters. Today, the culture wars have risen to a fever pitch as tribes anchor in their trenches. Honestly, I am not above any of it. I am as quick to dismiss the perspective of a fellow human as my neighbor is, judging them by their worst instead of seeking and inspecting the totality of who and what they represent. Engaging with each other has become increasingly perilous, and at times I have found deliberate silence to be a haven from the storm. Who among us wants to be condemned, insulted, targeted, or “canceled”?
My name is Benjamin Watson.
I recently retired from a 16-year career in professional football, a lifelong ambition I am proud and blessed to have accomplished. Like so many professionals in other sectors, I have committed most of my life to refine my craft, the chase of perfection permeating and directing every area of my being. In truth, there is no other way to fulfill one’s potential other than total devotion to the arena of achievement. But many times, we confuse our pursuits with our personhood and our efforts with our identity. Though I played football at the highest level, that was never who I was. I am a father, a husband, a friend, a citizen, and a voice. Most importantly I am an image-bearer of my Creator and a child of the King. Success will never be a determinant of worth. Human dignity and inherent value transcend profession, class, and creed. They are endowed, not earned.
In my ear, society can sound like a cacophony of messaging and talking points as each day brings its most popular issue to light. Every day we are presented with the choice of intentional indifference or intentional engagement. And while there is a time and place for both, this publication, The Watson Seven, is a place for the latter. I desire to welcome a diverse community of thinkers who covet the courageous, complex conversations needed to address the myriad topics that impact our daily lives. Total agreement is not always an attainable goal, but basic respect for fellow humanity should always be expected. While forces incessantly drive us apart, I believe that understanding is possible, and unity should be esteemed. Every step toward that end has a cost, something or even someone that we must avoid or release to voyage onward.
Through the intersections of Culture, Faith, Justice, Marriage, Parenting, Philanthropy, and Race my ultimate purpose is to equip individuals, families, and communities to love well and live intentionally.
Journey with me.
Now is the time.