Today we had a church membership meeting. We discussed two issues. One was an almost rubber stamp type of thing. The other had many facets, any one of which could derail civil communication and end in endless discussion and perhaps acrimony.

Our chair (not the nice blue ones we have, but the chairperson!) carefully steered us through. He pointed out that we needed to deal with a present, and very distinct, motion. He was careful to not let other issues distract us. Much like I had learned in a coaching session earlier in the week – whenever another issue arises, plan to deal with it but leave it for another time.

Now, although there were definitely two sides that came to the table, we met in the middle. Not the compromising middle that is tepid and insipid (let’s add apathetic and apologetic). Rather, the radical middle that recognized differences but wanted to try an option that could be vital and visionary.

Sometimes machinery in the right operator’s hands works. Thanks, John!!