building bridges?

over the past year i have been hearing a great deal about "building bridges" between moderns and postmodern/emerging. yet i still have no idea why. think about it, to build a bridge requires that both sides be willing to give and take; my experience with moderns is that they are very willing to give and take - as long as we are giving and they are taking.

in the modern conversation a bridge is always one way - we must give up our views and fall in line with their views - and when we refuse, we are called "radical" and "not interested in building a true community" and "we do not practice what we claim as a core belief." if we stand our ground we are tagged the "bad guys" who refuse to give an inch (so they can take a light-year). well, ok i am very willing to be the poster child for the "radical postmodern/emerging" conversation; as i am certian many others are as well.

i get offended when modern thinkers call themselves "bridge builders" (while claiming to be "postmodern thinkers") and then get mad when we will not give them what they want. they throw-back into our face words like "compromise" and "unity" and "community" as if they have some magic right to the ideas and all we are doing is distroying the church at its core - to me, community is built on a mutual trust, with a mutual vision and a mutual goal - while we may have the same goal (to some degree), we do not have the same vision and the trust level is way short in my view. this could be due to broken promises made by moderns in the past, and then them making excuses and blaming someone else for their failure - or it could be just a cultural thing where all the heroes have fallen and fall short of trust. to me, compromise is a 50/50 deal - i am willing to give in, are you? don't just tell me yes, then never intend to do it (turst issues again). are you willing to meet me half way, with all honesty? are you willing to give us 50% of what i want? are you willing to take only 50% of what you desire?

here are some questions:

how can we build a bridge when trust is not to be found?
how can we build a bridge when we have differing points of views?
how can we build a bridge when we have differing starting points?
how can we build a bridge when we are not understood?
how can we build a bridge when our ideas are not even accepted?
how can we build a bridge when what we believe is not in line with what they believe?

building a bridge is a great metaphor, but like all great metaphors it breaks down at some point - and in this case the point it breaks down is the point where it is trying to start. over the past year i have heard many in the postmodern/emerging conversation say that a bridge is needed because the moderns are the ones with the money and the building - well, if selling out what i believe God is telling me to do for the sake of money or a building is needed to build a bridge - i want nothing to do with building a bridge.

i believe in a multi-generational community of faith, and i stand by that. but in being multi-generational it does not mean i need too build a bridge, sell my beliefs, or compromise my faith to "allow older people" in to the community - not at all. we believe what we believe, we are who we are, we like the music we like, and we dress the way we like - and if you can accept that you are welcome into the community - but if you desire to join us, to change us - that is wrong and at that point you are not building a bridge, you are starting a barn fire.