Godly Is Defined By Neither
Tradition Nor Preference
It had been fifty years, give or take, since our Bible college days. Following college, our lives went in separate directions and only reconnected recently. The reunion had become somewhat strained.
At this meeting, we were sitting in a Starbucks sharing memories over coffee (and chocolate-coated coffee beans) and it was apparent that things were different. He was the same entertaining jovial guy and I was still me but the ground had definitely shifted.
We met in Bible college as young, gung-ho, charge-hell-with-a-water-pistol warriors intent on glorifying God which in real terms means rectifying all the wrongs in the world. We were fully committed to doing only right things and were focused on making sure everyone else did the same.
But after 50 years, the inevitable happened. We both shifted. The visions we’d entertained for a successful ministry hadn’t materialized exactly according to plan (they rarely ever do) and our life paths had taken turns we hadn’t anticipated; his for more practical endeavors: jobs, contracts, and paychecks. His devotion to church life had cooled but his conservative views had only hardened.
I had moved from a place of arrogant superiority. I no longer believed that my closest colleagues and I were absolutely right and everyone else was therefore wrong, and realized that maybe we are all a little wrong. I had also shed some of my early “thou shalt nots” so common to fundamentalist thinking, especially 50 years ago.
Jesus died for people who are wrong, not for people who are right and that includes everyone. No one holds the high ground absolutely.
Our thinking had diverged in several areas.
For my friend, Trump was the savior of US politics. I was the bad guy who didn’t vote for Trump and my disagreement was the talk of the brotherhood and a good reason to have less than enjoyable fellowship. Far less!
But there’s more. [Read more…] about What Does It Mean To Be Godly