Friday, March 11, 2016

Should We Debate Others?

A very close friend of mine grew up in a home that loved debating. Every sermon they listened to, they would find the few lines in it that they disagreed with and debated it. As she grew up, she realized that this was really being critical and causing strife. Is there anything good that comes out of debating?

We are called to be peacemakers and seek peace with all men. Most times when we begin to debate someone about something, it quickly turns into strife and arguing which is sin. Then one gets offended and walks off. My friend learned to state her opinion and then leave it at that. She never found it beneficial to force her opinions on others. Everyone loves this friend of mine.

It's so easy for the strong personality types like mine to want to be right and debate or argue our case until everyone agrees with us, but is this the way the Lord wants us to behave? NO! We are called to have gentle and quiet spirits and this is NOT being gentle and quiet. It's demanding our way and being selfish. Even if we are right, we are wrong since we care more about being right than loving others and esteeming them more important than ourselves.

Since it is the Presidential election time, we are watching a lot of debates and some of the haven't been pretty. Some of the men know how to state their case and be kind about it while others do not. They have to call each other names, belittle them, put them down, and try to destroy their reputation. When you are in a discussion with someone, it is better to state your case and be kind about it like some of these men are doing.

Next time you listen to a sermon and you know the preacher is a man of God, learn to enjoy his sermons instead of picking them apart. I never remember my parents criticizing the pastor on the way home from church. Ken and I will discuss the sermon and once in a while, we will share something we disagreed with in the sermon but not too often. One family I know would tear apart every sermon and the preacher on their way home from church and now none of their children are walking with the Lord.

We must be very careful when we are critical of others; is it to point out sin in them and help them to correct it or is it simply to tear them down and hurt their reputation? Nobody is going to agree with anybody else 100% so we need to be careful on how we disagree with them. God commands, "Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers" {Ephesians 4:29}. We should be known more for building others up, instead of tearing them down, even when we disagree with them.

This should definitely be happening in the home between a husband and a wife. No, your husband isn't perfect but instead of dwelling on all of his imperfections and even pointing them out, begin to dwell on those qualities that are good about him since you are commanded to do this. You will be a much happier person to live with if you begin building him up, instead of debating with him about everything you don't like about him and tearing down his ideas and opinions.