Friday, November 28, 2008

Common Ground

I am not so naive as to think that the love and unity I urged in the last post comes easily, among Catholics and other Christians as with anyone else. We are humans and all have our faults.

I was at a seminar recently where the age of the Earth was discussed. This is a contentious issue for scientists and laypersons, mostly old- against young-Earthers. One person from the audience asked whether we can find common ground (paraphrased, my pun). The presenters indicated they respect those who learn the facts before arguing instead of relying on hearsay or unscientific sources.

I think there is an even more basic area from which Christians can start. We who believe want to do God's will. At some level, we want to be pleasing to God. That's our common goal and desire and it gives us a very important bond.

Unfortunately, things go downhill from there. When individuals think we know what God wants, each of us takes for granted that s/he is right and anyone disagreeing is wrong. This is where things get bogged in arguments.

It is still necessary to keep trying though the going may get very tough. We must remember our common ground and work toward several goals. One consists of sharing our knowledge so that all may benefit. Another goal, which includes the first but goes well beyond, is to discern what really is pleasing to God and to ask for the grace and strength to do it.

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