Romans 12:17-21 & Eph. 4:1-3
Whatever happened to allowing one another to disagree without taking offense and breaking fellowship? It seems that in these days, everyone has the proverbial chip on their shoulder, just waiting for someone to knock it off. Why must we take issue with every trivial thing and feel that we must voice our opinion just because we have a First Amendment Right to free speech? Sure, we all have our opinions, but should we not sometimes reserve the ‘right to remain silent’? And what ever happened to civil discussions about diverse opinions and then allowing each to go on their way ‘convinced of their own opinion still’?
We seem to be living in a time when personal opinions do more to divide friendships rather than define them. “Iron sharpens iron”, says Proverbs 27:17, meaning that by mutual conversation and instruction, each is instructed and thereby benefited.
Personally, there are some things that I believe and hold as dear and unalterable, but that does not mean I have to be unkind when encountering someone who holds opposing views. I may seek to further instruct them, lovingly seeking to show them the error of their ways, (2Tim. 2:23-26), but if unsuccessful, I must still be kind.
Sometimes we forget that there are opinions other than our own, and each is entitled to his own…even if wrong. Anger comes from loss of focus and leads to arguments about feelings rather than issues. This often results in division.
Perhaps we might consider to stop insisting on being right all the time. Every time we insist on being right, that makes someone else wrong. This attitude damages relationships. Maybe we could simply be like the little girl in the movie FROZEN and just “Let it go…”. Do we gain that much by being right if it costs us a long held friendship?
The Apostle Paul wrote to the Church in Rome with advice on getting along (Romans 12:17-21). Notice that he wrote “If it be possible, as much as lieth in you…”. In other words, ‘give it your best attempt at keeping and maintaining peace. One does not have to give up sincerely held beliefs and principles in order to keep the peace. We may have to agree to disagree in an agreeable manner. You may win the argument, but lose a close friend solely on insisting to be right.
Peter Sholtes wrote the words and music to THEY’LL KNOW WE ARE CHRISTIANS BY OUR LOVE. It is based on John 13:34-35 which reads, “A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.” KJV Isn’t that what we should strive for? Let us be known for our disposition and our position will take care of itself.