Dissent is not Disloyalty

9 Nov

Faithful are the wounds of a friend. In the sub-vocalization of Scripture in my mind, the voice-over I hear is my father’s voice. His voice is the voice of many, probably only ranking behind my own squeaky childhood voice and that of my sister quoting chapters to me, but this is one that I think of often.

Fortunately, I hear a lot of Scripture clunking around in my head. But this verse, in particular, is one that I think needs to be accented. As I am alluding to the famous Murrow quote, so many of us feel as if loyalty is shown only in agreement. Agreement is not a virtue. In fact, mindless agreement, is in my mind, a waste of energy.

If you read the second half of the verse, you see that those who mindlessly agree (even rising to the level of “kisses”) are enemies. The fact is you won’t agree with someone on everything. I’ve written over 250 blog posts, and if you don’t disagree with one, you probably haven’t read very many. The fact is even those who love us most will occasionally disagree with us, if they are attempting to be close at all.

The thing that needs to be understood is that disagreement doesn’t have to be the end of it all. In fact, as I always tell my wife (and anyone else who will listen), “If one situation can ruin your relationship, your relationship wasn’t that solid to begin with.” A relationship based on agreement is less of a relationship and more of a contingency connection.

I have often written about the things on which we need to stand firm. Nevertheless, if we recognize someone as a friend, the fact that they are willing to tell us when they disagree, is a blessing. The fact that we are held accountable and willing to have someone continue to sharpen us is a blessing. And the Bible tells us that we should count those people as faithful.

So, the next time you have a friend who says something that makes you revolt or just flat get irritated, remember the need to talk to one another about it. Be willing to, in love, tell that person your disagreement. That is a way to be a faithful friend.

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