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Bring in the Christian perspective

June 20, 2020

IN tackling issues that are always open to a variety of opinions, we should always let the Christian perspective to bear on them. If we are truly faithful to that Christian perspective, we would know how to resolve contentious matters with a certain precision that is never just a matter of a simplistic black-and-white approach but rather one that will always be characterized by a sober pursuit for truth and fairness in the spirit of charity.

It’s when we depart from this Christian perspective and would just rely on some ideologies, and much less on mere off-the-cuff opinions based simply on what we consider as common sense and other human ways of perception, that we can get into trouble. Instead of attaining the real common good, we can only generate more division and polarization that will leave a trail of anger, hatred and the like.

We have to seriously take this duty of learning how to bring in the Christian perspective into our collective discussions and exchanges. We cannot deny that this way of discussing about issues is lamentably missing. We can even say that some people have gone to the extent that this so-called Christian perspective is unrealistic and impractical.

To be sure, to have a Christian perspective in tackling issues does not mean that we can only have one uniform position or view. It can lend itself to a variety of legitimate positions given the variety of situations and circumstances that we can find ourselves. Its precision is never rigid. It will always be open to any position no matter how different and conflicting they may be, as long as in the end that position or view is animated by charity.

Let’s remember that it is charity that will always presume and perfect the other two theological virtues of faith and hope. Without it, no matter how much we think we are right in something because of our faith and hope, we would still be wrong.

Remember St. Paul talking about the preeminence of charity over all the other virtues: “Love never fails. Where there are prophecies, they will cease. Where there are tongues, they will be stilled. Where there is knowledge, it will pass away…Faith, hope and love remain. But the greatest of these is love.” (1 Cor 13,8.13)

And this charity is shown to us fully in Christ who commands us to live it ourselves also. “A new commandment I give you, that you love one another as I have loved you,” he said. (Jn 13,34)

The Christian perspective is always characterized by charity more than anything else. It is this charity, as shown by Christ, that is willing to take on anything, understanding everyone, giving compassion and offering mercy to everyone, willing to suffer and die for everyone.

The truth according to our faith, of course, would be offered, explained and clarified, propagated and defended, but in the end the ultimate truth is in the charity as shown and lived by Christ.

So, let us train ourselves always to be charitable in our discussions and exchanges. This may involve a certain open-mindedness, willingness to listen to everyone, the practice of restraint, moderation and delicacy even as we may push our position forcefully.

Definitely, we need to be humble because it is pride that can spoil everything. With humility we can actually continue to learn even from our mistakes and those of the others.

We have to be quick to ask forgiveness if we happen to commit a mistake which is always a possibility, as well as to be quickly forgiving when other parties commit mistakes. Yes, we have to be prudent and tactful in our speech. Most of all, we should be willing to suffer, because in this life, no matter how right we may be in a certain issue, suffering and misunderstanding can always arise.

The Christian perspective is not so much in determining who is right or wrong. It’s in living charity in our diversity!