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Christian Middle Church: Why do people not like the middle or common ground?

Updated: Mar 8, 2018

Hi All!

Here's another sweet teaching on how to meet at the common or middle ground, why that is difficult, and what the distractions are. In order to understand why we are divided, it's important to understand what we are resisting and why.

For big answers to consider in answering "Why don't people like the middle/common ground:

1. You actually get good work done.

2. You are less attracted to politics, more attracted to God.

3. Your life is less of a yo-yo.

4. You are more likely to leave an impact.

For these 4 big answers to take shape, you need the common/middle ground. So, let's learn more about how we can get there (listen to the video above and read below):

I found some biblical scripture (below) that I thought was very helpful in explaining how to reach into the middle/common ground even if you don't agree with of the ideas in the scripture.

1 Corinthians 9:22 (King James version)

[Jennifer's notes correcting the patriarchy viewpoint]

To the weak I became as weak, that I might gain the weak. I am made all things to all men [and women], that I might by all means save some.

1 Corinthians 9:21-23 J.B. Phillips New Testament (PHILLIPS)

[Jennifer's notes correcting the patriarchy viewpoint]

My reward is to make the Gospel free to all men [and women]

For I take no special pride in the fact that I preach the Gospel. I feel compelled to do so; I should be utterly miserable if I failed to preach it. If I do this work because I choose to do so then I am entitled to a reward [Do you agree?]. But if it is no choice of mine, but a sacred responsibility put upon me, what can I expect in the way of reward? This, that when I preach the Gospel, I can make it absolutely free of charge, and need not claim what is my rightful due as a preacher. For though I am no man’s [or woman's] slave, yet I have made myself everyone’s slave, that I might win more men [and women] to Christ. To the Jews I was a Jew that I might win the Jews. To those who were under the Law I put myself in the position of being under the Law (although in fact I stand free of it), that I might win those who are under the Law. To those who had no Law I myself became like a man [or woman] without the Law (even though in fact I cannot be a lawless man for I am bound by the law of Christ), so that I might win the men [and women] who have no Law. To the weak I became a weak man [or woman], that I might win the weak. I have, in short, been all things to all sorts of men [or women] that by every possible means I might win some to God. I do all this for the sake of the Gospel; I want to play my part in it properly.

The scripture brings up the idea of empathy but if you read the Phillips version of the scripture, you might think that the Christ idea behind understanding someone is being authentic and being just like someone else. In some ways, taking the time to live out a different circumstance from your own is a way to understand another perspective or even to understand yourself better. Or, by natural course of our life, we might be drawn into circumstances that help us learn about our strengths and weakness, or what it means to be strong or weak.

What this scripture is NOT about though is being inauthentic, faking it, pretending, or manipulating. The idea behind understanding perspectives or people on the other side of the divide is to make our divisions less not more. For instance, if politics are played badly, there are more divisions, less trust, more chaos. When you come from a certain set of values, it's important to find out where both sides have something in common to find relationship.

One key idea I brought up in this video is that we have trouble with:

1. Identifying the problem

2. Identifying the solution

3. Enacting the solution

The christian church is no different here, and the difficulties come from asserting that religion is Christ, when the spirituality and the essence of Christ, his purpose, and relationship to God and God's purpose is important. It's basic. It's all about that turning toward God, and that abiding that I've talked about previously. The common and middle ground is that there are many more people who desire love, health, purpose, character, and a good life than those who don't. There are more who love than hate, regardless of what is plastered over the media. So, regardless of your side on the matters in today's times, there are more people who want the common good and the common ground than those who don't. We're just having a hard time agreeing about and trusting that. It's time we do. We might experience more of it.

God bless,


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