What is the issue that you think is so important that you can form an opinion around that is unmovable for you? What do you consider so important that it is hard for you to be swayed otherwise? There are many issues that divide people into different camps and often we judge others based upon the opinions we have formed regarding these issues.
I grew up in a very conservative denomination. They had rules about just about everything there was in life. They made judgments about others based upon whether or not others followed their particular rules. There were the big rules that they shared with other conservative groups--no smoking, no drinking, no cursing. This particular denomination, however, went much farther then some--no dancing, no going to movies (what they called "the picture show"), no going to plays, no going bowling, no wearing shorts or other clothing they considered "provocative". So, when one became a member of this group, one had to sign a pledge card that the new member would pledge not to do any of the things that the group looked down upon. This group wanted to be sure that its members were of one mind when it came to those things that they did not approve. So, people signed the card and tried to obey the rules but sometimes the rules were broken. Then, it was the job of the other members to bring the offender back in line.
I remember when I was in junior high and our school band had a "band dance". That was a dance for the band members to attend and there was a record player playing the tunes of the 60s and cold drinks and snacks, a fairly harmless set-up for junior high kids. There were chaperones and adults stationed around the room and what happened that night was pretty mild in comparison to some things that happen today. I did not dance since that was forbidden by our church so I sat there and watched as my friends danced. Some of my friends came up to me and asked me if I wanted to dance to which I replied, " I can't. It's against my religion" to which they replied, "Oh well, it's against ours too but we are dancing anyway." So, that made perfect sense to me so I got up and began to do those dances from the 60s that required no one to have a partner--the twist, the frug, the swim---some of you will recall what they may have looked like.
Suddenly, there stood at the entrance to the band hall, a harrowing figure with a frown on its face--my mother. She had come to pick me up at the dance and take me home because I did not drive in junior high and needed a ride home. Boy, did I ever get a lecture on the way home. I was told over and over again how evil dancing was and why we did not believe in dancing. I was not one to just accept a rule on face value, however, and asked where in the Bible it says that we cannot dance. (It does not, in case you are wondering). The stern reply was not to ask questions but just to obey the rules.
This rebel of a junior high boy could not accept that rule and asked the pastor the next Sunday the same question I asked my mother. He too told me to obey the rules and not ask questions so I did what any lively young man of 13 would do...I danced and went to movies and wore shorts and said questionable words, but not openly, in secret, in small groups, in places where I had to hide the fact that I was doing those things. I rarely got caught and it made breaking the rules all the more enjoyable. It became a quest to see how many times I could break the church rules and not get caught.
I left that church when I became an adult and never returned to it. It has changed somewhat over the years, becoming more accepting of society and what some in society like to do (they still frown upon dancing and drinking and smoking and cursing though). They never quite saw that they were judging others based upon the ideas they had about society. They preferred to brand people as "sinners" because they did the things they found to be distasteful, even if they were not unbiblical. They shunned people who broke the rules without regard to being repentant for their misdeeds. They found discipline to be more important than love.
What rule or opinion do we hold more dear than loving others who may embrace the ideas or break rules that we think should be obeyed? St. Paul told the church at Rome to allow others to eat what they wished and go where they wanted even if the individual did not agree with it. After all, said Paul, what is more important is that we love others and extend welcome to them even if we disagree with them.
We are all brothers and sisters in Christ. What we have is a bond of unity that exists in spite of the differences that we may hold. A modern author named Rachel Held Evans describes it this way: "This is what God's Kingdom looks like: A bunch of outcasts and oddballs gathered at a table, not because they are rich or worthy or good, but because they are hungry, because they said Yes, and there's always room for more." I like that. It describes well what we are about in our Christian family.
"Come unto me, all you who are weary and are carrying heavy burdens and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me; for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light." (Matthew 11:28-30)