To take a stand or not to take a stand, that is the question. Should we run into the fight or roll over in the fight? Do we absorb again or do we retaliate this time? What do we do when “push comes to shove?” Do you fight or do you “turn the other cheek”? What should I do? What should we do?
Is such conflict simply a matter of passivity versus activity? What are we to do where there is seeming injustice, where the wrong is never righted, where someone keeps “getting away with it?” Do we placate and give the problem to “the next person (or generation)?” Do we push back and “nip it in the bud?” What is a Christian or a church to do? What is the right thing to do?
Life gets complicated. Situations have their own uniqueness. Often there is no catch-all formula that will suffice. As individual Christians, and as the Body of Christ, we always need to intentionally seek the wisdom of God before impulsively seeking the wisdom of people. This takes wrestling with God in prayer (lots of wrestling) until He has the upper hand. Simply put, this is not easy to do!
Such dilemma is often more about behavior than belief; behavior both before and after the conflict at hand. We may believe ourselves to be “right on this one,” but how we act or react before others will be what matters most. In a finger pointing world, it is not necessarily the words we say but the behaviors we exhibit that speak the loudest.
We already are a culture of people speaking over each other, where the one with the louder voice often wins. Listening to the opposing side is rapidly becoming a rare commodity. “Professional” commentary and uninformed opinions freely fly. Money and lawyers talk. Salvos fire from both banks. In the end we seem to get nowhere, with nothing determined or decided. We merely live to fight another day.
So, whether it be conflict in the nation or in your church, what you do may be more critical than what you declare. Be mindful of eyes that see you, though you don’t see them. And of course, God sees. Let your conduct be evident to all. All things matter, but what matters most is your faith lived out in a confused and conflicted world.
Therefore, my brothers and sisters, make every effort to confirm your calling and election. For if you do these things, you will never stumble, and you will receive a rich welcome into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
2 Peter 1:10-11 NIV