I recently recognized the significance of my starting point on this journey I've been on for the past few years.
The starting point for myself was the recognition of Jesus prayer for unity, and the church's lack of focus in that regard. I wanted to understand what issues were keeping the church divided. I started examining other traditions, especially the RCC - which my protestant tradition occasionally still protests. I came to appreciate that many of the issues were not as black and white as I had once thought. I began to doubt that all my protestant traditions were absolutely true. I came to conclude that even if the RCC was wrong on many non-essential truths, it is not for me to judge. I will readily agree I am also likely wrong on many non-essential truths as well... I just don't know which ones.
I recognized that love and unity were more essential - it is one of the biggest themes in Scripture. We can't ignore that Christ's body is one over every doctrinal debate that has a few verses of support on each side. Maybe it's not all about having all the right answers.
I found a place where I can extend love and grace to my RCC brothers and sisters who have less than perfect theology IMHO, but may have a true love and devotion to my Lord. (btw: I'm not suggesting all RCC members have a true love and devotion to my Lord... only God could know that.)
Now more recently I've come to a point where I see some flaws in my own tradition. For some reason recognizing these flaws stirs up more emotions. I think it's because I recognize I'm disagreeing with brothers and sisters that have been close. These aren't the long separated brothers and sisters of a distant related tradition. Questioning my beliefs results in questioning the beliefs of many people that I am close to. And I know some of them won't be thrilled about this.
However, my logical response must be the same.
I recognize that love and unity is more essential - it is one of the biggest themes in Scripture.
I have found a place where I can extend love and grace to my protestant brothers and sisters who have less than perfect theology IMHO, but have a true love and devotion to my Lord.
The difference here is I know many of these people personally. I can see their sincere faith. I can't ignore that part. So that makes it much easier when I stop to think about it.
Disclaimer: About This Blog
THIS BLOG IS: my personal journey of how I am rethinking some of my spiritual beliefs.
THIS BLOG IS NOT: intended to point fingers at people who I think are wrong.
I do not believe the final judgement will be based on how many correct answers we get on a theology exam. I believe many people throughout history have had genuine relationships with our Lord and Saviour Jesus, despite holding questionable beliefs and practices. I make no claim to having it all figured out or being your judge. If we end up disagreeing over these topics I pray we can find a way to demonstrate grace.