Taking Sides

Marc Gungor, the author of “Laugh Your Way to a Better Marriage” has a tool in his seminar called “The Flag Pages.”  In it, it highlights people’s areas where they are most comfortable.  And one area I scored high in is the “Peace Country” (a bit ironic with all my military duty).  What the focus of people in this category is that they like folks to get along and they do not like conflict.  The more I have reflected on my own life, the more I know this has always been true about me.  My motto has been that if I run into a barrier, when possible, I will find a way around it rather than try to go through it.

What’s the old saying?  If we do not take a stand for something, then we will fall for anything.  Or what about the Bible verse about wanting to spit out that which is neither hot nor cold.

My only issue is that while I acknowledge, and I am increasingly trying to take a stand on some issues, is that I refuse to fall into the monochrome arguments that are often presented.  For example, if I think member X is right on an issue in the church that she disagrees with member y over, that doesn’t mean I always see member x as right and member y as wrong.  Likewise, to use a real world example, I really dislike what I see the House Republicans doing in this budget battle and government shut down.  Does that mean I think the Republicans are always wrong and the Democrats are always right?  No.  There is so much of this, “You are either for us or against us” mindset in some sectors of our country right now.  It is not that simple.

I have two children.  I don’t like it when they fight.  But if one does something unfair in their fights, it is wrong for me to gloss over this or say it is unimportant.  But likewise, if I point out that it is wrong, it doesn’t mean I love one child more than the other child.

In our world, I simply see an increasing importance for us to voice our opinion while at the same time resist being categorized by others.  They will categorize you anyway (they already have) but we don’t have to agree with their labels (the Wimmocks story comes to mind which I heard read again recently).

So, that is where I am on this day.  I commit to leaving my comfy confines of “peace country” while still loving those times that we are there.

What do you think?

Until next time,



About Tom Paine

I am a Presbyterian Minister and ANG Chaplain interested in current events, movies, TV, and novels.
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