I think it’s important that we maintain our personal relationships in order that we might influence one another to follow Jesus together. What I’m seeing now is a lack of dialogue or even the possibility of dialogue. Our deep polarization prevents so much of it because we are automatically defensive, for one thing, or for another have a fundamentally different view of the situation. Facts and the news are literally up for debate, never mind the interpretation of them!
It is not an easy time for discipleship, community, and relationship, and it’s thus a ripe time for it. We struggle to talk to each other, to relate, to connect. We need new ways to build community and trust so that we can have truthful and loving conversations. And I guess we’re back to where I started: the church. The body of Christ is the best tool to change the world. Our cells are the most intimate expression of the body. In them, we can relate, agree, and act for world redemption and transformation. Can they be the key to changing the world? I think they can be a key. I don’t know how to forgive the oppressors, and move them toward repentance and reconciliation, without a common community.
I’ll admit it, I’m concerned about the future. I have two daughters who are entering a world that rewards toxic behavior and vilifies decent behavior. They are entering one where they aren’t taught to be respectful to others and their elders. They are being thrown right into the polarization. It affects me personally. So I’m holding out hope. I’m idealistic enough to think we have a whole new world, one where truth isn’t a matter of an opinion and love isn’t a matter of preference.
Check out the bigger blog post on this subject here: https://www.circleofhope.net/jonnyrashid/after-the-gilette-ad-and-the-lincoln-memorial-incident-im-still-leaning-on-the-church/