When I think of the 1960s, I remember the hippies’ response to nearly everyone was “peace & love, man!” Sadly, I was a hippie during those years. The peace & love phrase was just a way to say, “I don’t want to argue. You stay in your own way, but leave us alone.”
When the time comes when I can look back on the era in which we currently live, I am sure that one of the hallmarks will be arguing. Is anyone else tired of this? Our society is so fractured that I am expecting any day now for someone to find social ills with Neapolitan ice cream!
Back in the day, if your car didn’t have shock absorbers, you’d be beaten and rattled to the bone while driving. But thanks to French cyclist J.M.M. Truffault, who invented shock absorbers in 1898, we can now drive in comfort.
Thankfully, as Christians, we’ve been taught to be argument absorbers. One of our jobs as representative of Jesus in this world is to absorb the social bumps and jolts and thuds that happen around us. We absorb by demonstrating peace in a checkout line that is slow or responding positively instead of getting angry when someone wants us to get worked up over something that has ticked them off, or speaking love into disagreements or hatred.
I find encouragement in what the Holy Spirit inspired the Apostle Paul to write in 2 Timothy 2:8-10, 14 (NLT):
“Always remember that Jesus Christ, a descendant of King David, was raised from the dead. This is the Good News I preach. And because I preach this Good News, I am suffering and have been chained like a criminal. But the word of God cannot be chained. So I am willing to endure anything if it will bring salvation and eternal glory in Christ Jesus to those God has chosen.
Remind everyone about these things, and command them in God’s presence to stop fighting over words. Such arguments are useless, and they can ruin those who hear them.”