The church as we know it is going through a trial right now. Not because of external persecution but because of turmoil within. To put things simply, half of the church stands on one side of the political aisle while the other half is on the other side. This division makes it hard to work together to find solutions that work for everyone, and it drives a wedge in friendships and families.
The church is supposed to be a light in the world and a body of stability, an example which all people can look up to and follow. Yet the church has become a divisive body that seems to alienate people more than it seems to bring them together.
It’s time to make a change.
Restoring unity in the church
Restoring unity in the church needs to be a priority of Christians on either side of the political aisle. While there is no cookie-cutter solution, there are some strategies we can all start using to help build bridges instead of burning them:
- Remember what we have in common — Whenever you disagree with someone or feel like you have nothing in common, you need to step back and remember that you actually have a lot in common. People are united in many ways. Most of us love justice, peace and worshipping God. The difference is in how we think all of this should be done. However, rather than starting from where we differ from one another, let’s establish a ground of solidarity on the beliefs, values and needs that we all share.
- Embrace diversity — It is important to have a diverse community of people who can challenge one another. Echo chambers quickly devolve and people end up splintering off left and right. A diverse community can challenge one another to be better people who can work together for the common good.
- Be humble — Humility is a virtue that all Christians should share. We all need to practice humility and not speak or act out of pride. Be patient and bear with your fellow Christian brothers and sisters with love (Ephesians 4:2).
- Work through conflict — Even when you embrace the three previous steps, conflict is bound to happen. When it does, it’s important to work through it. This is the hard way for many people, but it is the way to overcome differences and find common ground. Getting angry, fighting, and walking away from each other leads to further division and other problems. Take the hard path and work through conflict for the better of yourself, the other person and the church.
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