We Progressive Christians pride ourselves on how open-minded we are and how our open minds naturally lead us to include lots of folks who don’t look like us.
It’s a beautiful thing really.
Those gathered around the progressive table have greatly diverse heritages, socio-economic backgrounds, and even education levels. For Progressive Christians, this is what we understand God wants for humanity: people of all shapes and colors gathering together in a great human rainbow of love and hope.
But (and please excuse me for even asking this), what if opinions were colors?
What if progressive thought were colored purple and conservative thought orange?
What if we took the great eclectic rainbow of people who are gathered around the progressive table and assigned them color based on their opinions?
I suspect we’d have one great purple sea.
The truth is, the same is true for conservatives. Only, they don’t exactly pride themselves on diversity, do they?
I think Eliza, over on The Moral Courage Channel on YouTube, makes a really solid point about how we all (progressive and conservative) tend to only talk about difficult topics with like-minded people.
Have a listen to her “Just One Question” video and see if you don’t agree.
But, talking about tough subjects with people who share our opinion only recycles the same thoughts over and over. It doesn’t bring new ideas or perspectives to the table.
And, the reality is that we have to change to grow. We progressives love to grow in our knowledge and world perspective. A key thing for doing that? Change.
Here’s something I can promise you: if you are exposed to very little new thought, particularly thought that stands counter to your own, you are going to change very little.
Maybe it’s time to find more people who are different from us and spend time with them – and even have those difficult discussions.
After all, I seem to recall stories of this guy from some 2000 years ago who spent all his time with prostitutes, tax collectors and others folks who were very different from him. As a matter of fact, he also seems to have spent a certain amount of time in conversation with his political and religious opposites.
Maybe those of us who say we are trying to learn from him and follow his teachings should start doing a little more of the same.
Who knows? We might even learn something.
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