God is my conscience, Jesus lives in my heart… this blog is about what I see, what I think, what I do and how I serve God
Reading Adam Hamilton’s “Seeing Gray in a World of Black and White”
“One of the hallmarks of our tendency to sin is that we feel the need to criticize, we take pleasure in gossiping, and we feel qualified to make judgments, often with very little information. … Rather than trying to fully understand why they believe what they believe, and being open to the possibility that we are wrong, we feel threatened by their convictions and look for ways to criticize the individual and his or her convictions. Because talking with those who disagree with us face-to-face about why we think they are wrong might be a bit too threatening, and would require that we listen to their views and arguments, we find it easier to criticize them where it is safe, among friends or like-minded people, on our blogs, or via e-mail” (Page 20-21).
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“Part of the polarization we are experiencing in our country today is a result of pastors and church leaders who have abandoned the teachings of Jesus and the apostles regarding the way we speak of those with whom we disagree. Part of the healing of our nation must come from the church modeling for our society how we are to love those with whom we disagree” (Page 22-23).
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“In many ways the evidence of our faith is found on our ability to control our tongue (or our keyboard). When you find Christians who speak ill of others, who tell half-truths, who resort to name-calling, remember the words of Jesus and the apostles and ask if this person reflects the life Christ calls us to” (Page 23-24).
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“Looking for the good in those with whom you disagree, expressing enough humility to admit that you may be wrong, and seeking to remove the log from your own eye before removing the splinter from your neighbor’s eye – these are characteristics of Christ’s followers. And it is in remembering and practicing these Scriptures that Christians will stop being the wedge that divides our nation, and start acting instead as bridge builders and peace-makers that bring an end to the culture wars” (Page 24).
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On page 24 Adam Hamilton freely admits that he has failed to live out the words of this chapter on too many occasions, but they still reflect his aim and ideal. I cannot say it better myself; that is a goal I aspire and work to reach.
Hamilton, Adam. Seeing Gray in a World of Black and White. Nashville, TN: Abingdon, 2008 .