I have walked many roads in my short life. To the point of my entire post I will refrain from specifying each of these roads as part of my personal resistance… resisting my own urges. I have walked with Jesus down most of these same pathways.
I will further admit to being given to emotion. I am the first (and usually only) one in my house to cry at the appropriately sentimental time in a movie. I am the one making the impassioned pleas for more of this or less of that. I am the mercy-showing disciplinarian… at times to my wife’s chagrin. I am a leader and a joiner – that is, I try to lead other people to join together for a common cause.
Frankly I used to be of the opinion that there was only one true brand of Christianity… which (not coincidentally) happened to be the brand that I belonged to at the time. This opinion was held so firmly that there were many people who I then labeled as apostate (or worse) that I now identify as Jesus-followers. I am embarrassed at things I have said in that regard. I have asked some of those same people to forgive me and now am enriched by their friendship.
Just a few days ago I wrote a post entitled The Danger In Rethinking. My wife, my dad, and others who know me best have all said things like, “Are you sure you want to put yourself out there?” If I had my wits about me, I’m sure I would retreat to a quiet place and just keep selling oil (my for real day job). Too few years ago, I probably would have responded to each disparaging post and attempted to explain myself and my positions at every turn. I am learning to recognize dead ends… conversations that will likely serve no Kingdom good. I often wonder if individuals who have questioned some of my most dearly held convictions have taken time to read posts like Where You Start Is Everything… a summary of how I approach issues. Some people don’t want to understand. Some are not ready to understand. Some simply cannot.
The Jesus way is personal. This venue is impersonal. Therefore, at least so far as the blogosphere is concerned, I will keep trying to recognize dead ends. Instead of talking about people I choose to talk to them. And if you truly care about any individual (including me)… perhaps you should do the same.