You know what’s nice?
When someone disagrees with me but still loves me. Still respects me. Still maintains my dignity.
A disagreement does not devalue an entire person or the whole worth of their opinions. We do this too quickly. We demonize others under a sweeping blanket judgment. One wrong sentence and we throw them under a bus.
Being “for” or “against” an issue doesn’t instantly have to mean division. It doesn’t have to strangle us into diametric categories: because we are more than categories. We’re flesh-and-blood people, and arguing over issues doesn’t even begin to address our complexities.
It’s also strange that we can respect those with very different belief systems or religions or philosophies — but if someone inside your own camp differs on one tiny point, we bury them with weaponized dogma. People within their own communities eat their own. Maybe it’s easier, or maybe we’re just cowards who hide behind the false strength of our doctrinal towers. I know this because many times I’m that coward.
I feel like all this could be solved over a cup of coffee. Which means awkward eye contact, face to face conversation, and listening without interruption or presumption. Oh, world. If only.
Thank God for coffee, and for fellow nuanced travelers.
8 thoughts on “Disagreement Doesn’t Have To Be Division”
Thank you. This needs to be said. Common sense isn’t all too common at times.
Yeah for coffee! I find that the eye contact isn’t as awkward when I’m gripping a cup. It kinda disarms my tendency for presumption probably because I’m forced to shut up every time I take a sip. Great thoughts, Joon.
I didn’t even think of that but totally right, the gripping and sipping work there too.
The real problem comes in when one or the other party is invested in being right more than loving others. I think that’s the key.
I value much more those who think differently, believe differently, have a different hermeneutic-and can discuss this with me rationally, calmly, and with open eyes & ears. Those people are rare. One of the reasons I value them so much.
I appreciate when veteran-Christians also step out of their bubble and engage with — gasp! — those who don’t believe.
Thanks for this…..
from a wounded soldier…..
Thanks for this. I hate the “we’ll just agree to disagree” because I didn’t agree to that! It means you speak for me (how rude), you don’t think I am important enough to have a dialogue with, and you have made it clear you are unmovable that your opinion is better than mine… What if we are both wrong? When I was young the farmers talked across each other’s kitchen table; disagreement wasn’t considered a virtue, but friendship was.