It’s easy to fight when you have a crystal-clear clash on politics with a family member; it’s not so easy to show love. So, what do you do when it gets hard? What do you do when you’re so different in beliefs, but still need to commune together?
Remember What Ties You Together
Having dinner with your family is beautiful thing because you’re spending quality time together. You’re receiving their encouragement and you’re also giving it. You’re listening to each other’s lives and hopefully able to confide a little.
Yet, there often comes a time when differences arise, and it’s all too easy to forget to respond in love. So, the fighting or bickering ensues. One way to lean away from this is to remember to make it a point to laugh about absolutely hilarious family memories and share what makes your family unique. The different political parties you may or may not belong to are just one small facet of your personality; there is more that you share in common with your family members than areas in which you differ greatly.
Focus On The Father
Politics don’t have to arise, but if they do, make it light and cordial, and respond always through the voice of grace, which is gentle and soft-spoken. It’s important to overlook your political differences by focusing on the Father and how He is still sovereign no matter what.
Who is truly sovereign in the grand scheme of things? Is it someone’s opinion, or the God who stilled oceans and created the starry hosts? God is in control, and He certainly didn’t cultivate disputes to be the normality in our society, nor the contradictions to His Word. So, remembering the Father, who He is, His supremacy and His love will help calm the tightness in your chest when you disagree.
Remember also that Christ communed with people of different backgrounds, whom we know as sinners. This is not a direct parallel to a family member who holds different convictions; rather, it holds the truth that God’s presence alone is so much bigger than the silence of a difference that merely exists. Jesus Christ sat among the lowest, so that differences wouldn’t be ignored, but that they would be addressed in love. One doesn’t need to state the difference of beliefs; sometimes it’s the mere act of communing and encouraging that goes farther than a long, drawn-out conversation.
Heed His Word
Turning to the Bible can be helpful when you know you’ll be faced with opposing views. The following is a beautiful verse you can reflect on before spending time with a family member whose political beliefs differ from your own:
“Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive. And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony. And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful.” —Colossians 3:12-15
End In Prayer
Lastly, it’s vital to end in prayer. Pray for one another, and hold fast that love conquers all. In the end, political differences won’t deter you from believing what you hold fast to, but one can’t let it be a deterrent from showing love, either. I know that’s very hard to do, too, but imagine what one small word of encouragement can do for someone you love.
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