The Shrinking Middle

One of my early dreams for DOOR centered on the idea that it was a good thing to create a safe space to explore who God is.   I do not think I ever anticipated how controversial such a dream would become.  I have always been somewhat amused by the liberal-conservative divide in politics.  It makes for great TV and provides excellent source material for late night comedians.

It has been my hope that the church would find a way to move beyond and above such inane divisions.  Lately I have begun to wonder if the church has been sucked into the same mentality as our politicians – you are either with us or against us.  This kind of “either/or” speak makes for great TV; it just doesn’t work anywhere else, especially in the faith community.

Debate, exchanging opinions, and sharing ideas should be the hallmarks of a strong faith community.  I am not aware of any imperative from Scripture that demands we all think and believe exactly the same.  When Jesus was cornered by the religious leaders he simply said love God and love your neighbor.  Love allows space for difference.

This year I have received more emails and requests asking DOOR to take official stands on every imaginable “hot-button” issue – the military, homosexuality, abortion, and marriage to name a few.  In the midst of all of this there are those who think we are too liberal while others cannot believe how conservative we are.

It saddens me to think that that church is buying into the same rhetoric and divisiveness we see in the political world.  When we become like the world around us we also give up the right to be prophetic.  I want to propose that people of faith are most prophetic when they create space for alternative understandings, ideas, and discussions.  It is in these places and spaces that the kingdom of God is revealed in all of its richness and diversity.

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2 Comments

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2 responses to “The Shrinking Middle

  1. glenn

    Praying for y’all in this.

  2. Philip Abeyta

    It sounds like you would like Christianity to be whatever each individual wants to make it to fit his or her lifestyle. The problem with that idea is that it doesn’t allow for Truth. If your idea contradicts my idea, then which one is truth. Jesus said “I am the way, the Truth, and the Life”. If we follow Gods word then there’s no need for debate. I am not a Liberal or Conservative, I am a Christain. That means I follow Christ, and his Word. Yes we will make mistakes, and his grace will cover us. But the mistakes are made when we follow human ideas without testing these ideologies against the true Word of God.

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