When you debate a person about something that affects them more than it affects you, remember that it will take a much greater emotional toll on them than on you. For you, it may feel like an academic exercise. For them, it feels like revealing their pain only to have you dismiss their experience and sometimes their humanity. The fact that you might remain calmer, under those circumstances, is a consequence of your privilege, not increased objectivity on your part. Stay humble.
I will not quarrel with you about my opinion only see that your heart is right toward God; that you know and love the Lord Jesus Christ, that you love your neighbour and walk as your master walked and I desire no more. I am sick of opinions; am weary to bear them; my soul loathes this frothy food. Give me a solid and substantial religion; give me a humble, gentle lover of God and man; and men full of mercy in good faith, without partiality and without hypocrisy; a man laying himself out in the work of faith, the patience of hope, the labour of love. Let my soul be with these Christians wheresoever they are, and whatsoever opinion they are of!
Post wisely over the next months. Contribute to discourse, not division. Check your facts. Resist Memes and cheap digs. Create beautiful content. We can transcend the bitterness and be better, even when we disagree.
Winsome love doesn’t mean that we must accept and embrace other people’s positions; it simply means we avoid the hostile debate that defines online engagement. Winsome love doesn’t speak to whether we disagree; rather, it shapes the way in which we disagree. Too often our engagement is characterized by an all-or-nothing debate that we are determined to “win.” And this is where it gets practical: It’s not about winning or losing; it’s about sharing Jesus and inviting others to follow him.
Whenever we treat people honorably even if they refuse to honor us, we demonstrate that we have a standard within us that isn’t determined by the people around us. We don’t just honor people because they are honorable, but we honor people because we are honorable. For a Christian, honor is a condition of the heart, not just the product of a good environment. Honor doesn’t mean we agree with the people we are honoring; it simply means we value them as people who have been created in the image and likeness of God.