It’s no secret. I love controversy. I also love to make my point known because I’m right and you’re wrong so you should probably get on my level…like now…seriously this train is leaving the station.
Ok, so maybe I’m not always right, as a matter of fact it’s pretty often I’m wrong. Also, If I’m not wrong, it’s likely I was wrong in stating my rightness.
We live in a time where we’re losing the capability to communicate well. Long gone are the days of two old men sitting in rockers on the front porch for hours on end with a pipe in hand and conversation for days. Just this past Sunday I got in the car with Haley and explained to her how terrible I was on that given day at ending conversations (This is easily the hardest part of conversation for me). I just start to fumble over multiple goodbyes and usually that person is still trying to end conversation and I’m just like, “Ya that line at Jason’s Deli is getting longer…”
However, this isn’t a post about failure to communicate on a daily basis in person over any general topic. It’s the fact that somewhere along the way, and it is likely a product of the above, that we forgot how to disagree.
Not only that, but we forgot how to discuss such disagreements AND we live in a deep fear that our disagreeing is going to end relationships. This is a deep tragedy. Really it is. It divides the church, our relationships, it takes away authenticity and individuality, and we begin to stick with people who only hold our point of view because oh my goodness thank goodness they don’t think that.
It’s come to my attention that a lot* of people (*read 7 and a half) like to watch conversations between myself and other people in ministry. They simply love to just read the banter and the disagreement. It often comes from a product of myself, other alumni from the ministry I grew up in, and other pastors who grew up in that system. Now, before you jump all over a group of people for arguing on social networks, I deeply love all of these people and it’s often that we’re PMing within that laughing out how ridiculous we are.
But that’s just it. We still love each other. We still encourage each other. Even if the person on the other end is the dumbest person in the world. (Never me though…I always have my crap straight folks SO KEEP ON READING)
This past week I was able to see MUCH maturity and conversation on two posts that came across my page specifically. One was on a church now being held in a bar and that whole idea of it being radical. I legitimately wanted to hear peoples thoughts. Everyone had opinions and no one was attacking each other. I even had a side conversation with someone that I know openly disagrees with me and it was really good for both of us. Then again last night, the people that I love and look up to, were able to disagree about how media communicates body image and how that often falls on our own responsibility despite what the media says. With a little bit of a disagreement I felt the need to jump in because I’m 21 and I have the world figured out people! I pointed out that anyone could state what they wanted to, but it needed to be with maturity and understanding, not to win the fight but to better yourself and other people by taking place in the conversation.
AND THAT IS THE POINT.
If the conversation and people in it are not going to be better for your presence and opinion then close.dat.mouth.
I say that with love really. It’s for your benefit and the benefit of others. Whether on social media (which is likely because we are public cowards) or face to face.
So, to close, here are some things that can come out of a great and mature “Facebook Fight*” (*read, educated discussion between mature individuals”
1. You learn a point of view that you literally never thought of or saw as a possibility. Congrats, you are no longer a close minded idiot unaware of what the other 7 billion people on the planet think.
2. You learn that you can’t accurately defend your point and should go back to the research. This is specifically credible with the Bible. Seriously people. Read it, Practice it, Know it, Repeat.
3. You get better at communicating. This might be the greatest gain. You will never communicate perfectly, so ALWAYS be bettering your vocabulary, grammar, and organizational skills.
4.You gain a deeper respect for a topic and an individual. Sometimes I gain a lot of respect for an individual and how truly intelligent they are…even if I don’t agree with them.
5. Lastly, you might actually find out that you agree with that person. Sometimes we’re saying the same thing but we’re too busy shouting and crying that we don’t realize it. It’s a shame.
These are just a few things that I have seen. It is by no means the only way to communicate or present yourself, but darn it we need to learn that we are not the end all be all of intelligence and wisdom. Especially Christians.
Never stop learning.
With Respect and Love,