I Can Love You, and not Agree With You

Stephen Kneale in late 2020 wrote an article entitled, “It’s affirmation or nothing” about a government official forced to resign after she argued for a conscience clause protecting ministers who don’t want to perform same-sex marriages

You can read the article here, but there was one sentence that stuck in my head.

Asking me to offer you the freedom to make your own decisions is reasonable, asking me to completely agree with a sinful act is unreasonable.

This is a powerful because it asks a very important question.

Is it possible to love someone, and not agree with them?

In the past it was possible to completely disagree with someone, but still treat them with respect. Humbly “agreeing to disagree” was always seen as an act of great love.

Sadly today the idea of love has been redefined….

If someone doesn’t completely accept you, then they aren’t being loving!

The problem is love isn’t about complete acceptance

In fact, sometimes the most loving thing we can do is disagree with someone!

That statement may sound a bit controversial, so allow me to explain how disagreement is an act of love.

I have male Christian friends who have permission to call me out on things, and I’m encouraged to do the same for them. Sometimes we can get off track, or develop sinful habits without even realising it. This is when a true friend will put their arm around your shoulder and in love say “this is something you need to work on.”

Disagreement or Biblical confrontation should never be done in an attitude of anger. We shouldn’t look upon those in the LGBT community as “disgusting individuals” who are somehow lower than us. We are all sinners apart from the help of God!

Instead disagreement is motivated by love for the individual

It’s not uncommon for children here to play in the road. Most of them keep an eye out for vehicles, but let’s say a car is coming, and the child doesn’t see it.

I would yell “get out of the road!”, and if the child still didn’t obey, pull them to safety myself. My love for that child (and desire for their safety) leads me to rescue them.

In the same way anyone living in sin (not just LGBT) cannot be allowed to play with their ball in the road while a car is speeding towards them. Instead I in love will deliver them from that dangerous situation.

There’s much more that can be said about this. But I pray these simple illustrations show disagreement is an act of love. And because that’s true, acceptance is an incredibly unloving act.

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