Love People, Hate Ideas

Much to my astonishment, I've discovered that Jess actually hates the idea of watching war movies!

As this sad reality began to dawn on me I became fearful she may no longer love or want to be with me because of our differing points of view. Although I find it exhilarating to watch men advance into enemy territory under a hail storm of gunfire, Jess has no appetite for blood splattered movie cameras and would rather watch the Notebook (again!).

But as the months drifted by with no sign of discrete bag packing I finally began to realise she wasn't planning on leaving after all. Although she had different ideas to me she still had the capacity to love the person she disagreed with!

James McPherson says, "Tolerance is always right. However tolerance only applies to people never to the error. Jesus said, 'love your enemies' not their ideas".

Although we are not obligated to love every new idea or philosophy, Jesus clearly commands us to love all people. Period. It doesn't matter who you are, where you are from or what you believe. It doesn't matter whether people agree with you, disagree with you, offend, hate or vilify you. Jesus commands us to love everyone.

But loving people does not automatically translate into loving their ideas. And here is where the beauty of love and opposing ideas come together:

'Hatred stirs up conflict, but love covers all offenses' – Proverbs 10:12 (ESV)

This word, 'offence' literally means, 'a contest, quarrel or brawl' (Strongs). It's not people who should be fighting, but ideas.

Love is what 'covers' and creates a safe arena for ideas to fight one other. In the same way the roof at Etihad Stadium provides cover for players to fight for glory, so does love provide a safe place for conflicting ideas to test their strength against one another.

Under the 'cover' of love, Jess and I have had many opposing ideas contest against each other. Some of our best ideas have even been forged in the fire of disagreement.

If you want to live in a 'progressive' society, then create a safe arena for ideas to compete against each other while remaining resolutely committed to loving people regardless of the outcome!

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