My guess is that more than a few of us remain pretty amazed at the opportunity to drop by once in a while, check out the conversation, and as we care to, compare notes, anonymously, with people from all over the world—about matters that are important to us.
But having said that, I wonder how many of us are satisfied with seeing blog subjects deteriorate into some of the same seemingly unresolvable disagreements over and over again?
How often do we sense our gratefulness to Christ deepening and our love for others growing in the middle of a group that ends up unraveling in disagreements over matters that we don’t think are biblical, reasonable, loving, or true?
I think I’ve heard some of you say that you find such disagreements tiresome. Others come and go sensing that they aren’t up for the debate. More than a few are looking for a spiritual lift and insight rather than hearing the same arguments over and over again.
Some graciously go along to get along. Sometimes we just talk around the posts or comments that we consider unnecessary and unimportant. The open, and largely unmanaged format, after all, does allow us to ignore what we don’t want to talk about. That’s not all bad.
But I’m wondering whether there might be a better way to deal with a wide range of subjects, while encouraging differing perspectives, and talking together in a way that actually deepens our understanding of one another— more than our trenches and battle lines.
What if, as we give one another space to express different thoughts, we also tried to do more storytelling, ask more questions, and see if we really understand one another rather than trying to prove that we are right?
Don’t get me wrong. I’m not suggesting that any of us give up our conscience, convictions, or understanding of what is true, and loving, and faithful. I’m just thinking that it could be so refreshing to hear people of differing positions telling their own stories, listening to one another, and asking questions that aren’t leading or loaded to make a point—but questions that are meant to encourage understanding—and therefore better decisions of faith, hope, and love.
I’m not saying either that this is not happening—only that I wish it could happen more… and not just here… but wherever followers of Christ talk to one another– or to those who have not yet discovered the kind of understanding, love, forgiveness, patience, hope and encouragement we are all looking for.