Just a day ago, the NFL talks between owners and union officially came to an impasse. The owners are going with a lockout and the union has de-certified. Much of the bickering back and forth has been extremely confusing for anyone without a law degree, at least on one level. On another level it is as simple as “each side wants more money.” Of course there are different nuances like protection for players, an 18 game season, shorter off-season routines, and the like. But in the end its hard to deny that money doesn’t have the most to do with it (love’s sure got nothing to do with it).
And so for the average fan like myself, I see two angry factions fighting over some things I just don’t get: the issues, the terms, and of course the ludicrous amount of money. Both sides look like a bunch of yahoos.
I wonder if that’s what non-believers think when they see opposing parties in the Church blasting each other over spiritual issues they just don’t get. I’m not saying that some issues aren’t worth fighting over like breaches of orthodox doctrine. And I know that the natural mind isn’t going to “get” why some truths are so important because those truths are only “spiritually discerned (I Cor 2:14).”
There will inevitably be some confusion or condescension from unbelievers amidst fierce church debate. Yet I wonder if unbelievers often see our back-and-forth as not much different than owners and players squabbling over issues and money which they just can’t understand.
Perhaps we will have more sympathy for the unbeliever if we can see our public debates from the “fans” perspective. Maybe it will make us be more gracious to one another?