Proverbs 12:15 (KJV): "The way of a fool is right in his own eyes..."
often think others have got it all wrong, when honestly, our perspective
and possibly our attitude is what's really wrong; it probably isn't that they need to
change, but that we need to change our way of thinking.
Opinions are defined as "views or judgments formed about something, not necessarily based on fact or knowledge."
Many of us preach our opinions with such boisterous and abrupt force that others feel their thoughts won't matter or be heard even if they tried. Sharing opinions is one thing; forcing them to be accepted by others is another.
No matter what someone has to say or how they look at a subject, we'll plow them over or cut them off instead of stopping to listen.
|Salem, OR (I hope everyone sees the irony in this one...)|
What we don't realize is that God has has given them a different point of view based on the different experiences He has brought them through.
There is always more than one angle to see a situation.
Fellowship is interesting and dynamic because of the multiple perceptions we can all bring to a conversation.
Yet for the sake of being right, we verbally duke it out with our brothers and sisters.
I believe it grieves the Lord to watch His children quarrel with each other, or
even with unbelievers, when He is, or should be, our common reason for
Isn't it more important to God that we have harmony with others rather than defeating them in an argument, "proving" our point, while injuring and possibly ruining future friendships?
I just can't see Him nodding in approval saying,
"You sure showed them!"
2 Timothy 2:24 (ESV) says "And the Lord's servant must not be quarrelsome but kind to everyone, able to teach, patiently enduring evil..."
On the flip side, some people seem to make it their mission to cause a spiritual
debate. But we don't need to stoop to their level by giving them the reaction they
are looking for.
You will never gain their respect or prove you are a
bigger person by playing their own game.
I know, Christians should be zealous and passionate. We
find it hard not to get riled up when someone purposely provokes us and
contradicts our beliefs.
Although there may be times God can give us wise, neutral words to respond that douse the fire another is trying to spark, He doesn't need us to defend Him--over time He has proven He is more than capable of that.
Romans 14:13, & 19 (ESV): "Therefore let us not pass judgment on one another any longer, but rather decide never to put a stumbling block or hindrance in the way of a brother...let us pursue what makes for peace and for mutual upbuilding."
Even the Old Testament is in favor of peace over prideful opinions: "Thou shalt not avenge, nor bear any grudge against the children of thy people, but thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself..." Leviticus 19:18 (KJV).
You know the old saying, agree to disagree?
|Sabino Canyon, Tucson, Arizona|
Eternal life is living for and loving others--whether they agree with you or not.
Even when you know you're absolutely right, based on scripture and all, the best option is to pray for the other party instead of condemning them for not seeing eye to eye with you.
If you've said your part, leave it there, don't shove it down their throats because chances are they'll choke and spit it right back in your face.
At the end of the day, the only being we an change, control, and keep in check, is ourselves.
Let them debate doctrine, tweak and interpret the Bible to their own pleasing; they can never argue your personal testimony and the love you have for Christ and His people.
Remember, The LORD shall fight for you, and ye shall hold your peace (Exodus 14:14 KJV).
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