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More than changing minds

Making a stand. Creating space. Those are just two reasons for engaging in argument.

Dave Barnhart is an ordained elder in the North Alabama Conference of The United Methodist Church. He pastors a new church named Saint Junia, whose mission is “to become a diverse community of sinners, saints, and skeptics who join God in the renewal of all things.” You can read his blog at davebarnhart.net.

Nurturing a diverse community involves healthy communication. In a recent feature in MinistryMatters.com, Barnhart asks, “What’s the point of arguing?”

He begins, “I frequently hear and read people ask, “What’s the point of arguing? Nobody is going to change their mind.” This is a common refrain on social media. There’s some truth to this claim. “The backfire effect” is a term given to the tendency for people to actually dig in and resist evidence that contradicts their belief

Backfiring aside, Barnhart asserts, “the point of arguing is not always to change minds. Sometimes arguing has more important goals.

Read more about why Dave Barnhart contends that our faith compels us to argue.

Last Updated on October 27, 2023

The Michigan Conference