I’m guilty – no doubt about it! Sometimes people can really rub me the wrong way and I have been known to share an opinion or two (or three, or…). It’s true, there are times when things need to be said – another perspective needs to be shared. We won’t all agree – even within our own communities. Religion, gender, race and economic status can be huge barriers when it comes to finding common ground. And we are passionate – God made us that way. But, are we passionate about the right things?? It seems as though we are more passionate about being right than doing right. More interested in focusing on our differences than in honoring eachother when we express those differences in an honorable and forthright manner. Just because I hold something near and dear to my heart does not make me right – only God gets to determine what is right and what is wrong. Strength of conviction does not always reflect biblical truth. As Christians, I believe most of us will agree that we all have unique giftings and callings on our lives. We also are given different sets of circumstances, resources and parameters at our disposal to achieve our purpose. A street corner preacher will turn me off any day of the week, and yet there are those who are strongly convicted and turn to Christ after hearing such a message. I may receive the message of God more readily through music or art while another will find Him in reason and argument. The bottom line is this; aside from such obvious tragedies as hate groups and opportunists who would prey on the weak and broken, as people of love and grace, we need to choose to hear the voice of another as simply that – a voice. Their voice will touch the hearts of those God has called them to. Your voice will speak to those who need to hear from you. With so much in-fighting, all anyone hears from those of us who follow Christ is noise. Let us re-commit to one another a brotherly love and compassionate spirit, and do our OWN job set. God will judge those in need of it – never let it be us. This is just one voice – and just my opinion.