Redeemed people in redeemed conversations have a redemptive effect on the world. John Wood, Jr. defies most stereotypes. He’s a young, African-American Christian man who is active in the political conversations from an expressly conservative position. John Wood is one of its national leaders of Better Angels, a Minnesota based initiative to bridge the great divide in America. His desire to remain in relationships whom he differs politically fuels his desire to lead America to an improved state of union.
Most of us are fed up with the divisive rhetoric, but what are we actually going to do about it? John Wood, Jr. and Rob Robertson from Better-Angels.com, joined me to discuss how we can recover social trust through good faith and good will despite differences.
At the center of the conversation is a desire to have real friendships, real relationships, real “we’re all in this together” patriotism. Which leads us to ask:
- Do I automatically assume the worst of those on the other side of the political divide?
- Do I attribute the worst possible motives to those I disagree with, while giving the full benefit of the doubt to those that share my perspective?
- Can I hit the pause button long enough to really hear a differing viewpoint? Do I have sufficient empathy to actually hear the other person’s point of view?
Our conversations are often dominated by those on the extremes, and our media is often curated from sources that reinforce our bias. However, is that the right way for believers to operate?
In addition to Better Angels, there are others seeking to help us have better conversations across political divisions.
- The Problem Solvers caucus and the Reformers Caucus are working to influence Congress.
- Democrat Michael Wear and Republican Justin Giboney, hosts of the Church Politics podcast, are seeking to change Christian engagement.
- Dr. Robert George and Dr. Cornell West< are striving to change higher education and public discourse.
- Billy Hallowell and others are seeking to change the conversations in media.
Where are you seeking to change the conversation today – and are you moving those conversations in the direction of Jesus?Combating political polarization