Recently there has been a spate of discussions concerning LDS mission experiences. The first one I encountered was a session at the 2012 SLC Sunstone Symposium. Since then there has been others; this post will summarize the one on bycommonconsent.org.
Kyle M discussed “bible bashing.”
Everyone told me as a missionary that we shouldn’t “bible bash” and argue because “the Spirit can’t work where there’s contention.” Nobody told us not to bible bash because we were stupid 19-year-olds who didn’t know anything.
Comments on Kyle’s blog post included:
Bashing and/or arguing is just disrespectful of the beliefs of others.
I don’t remember my setting apart specifically granting me arrogance . . . must have picked that up on my own.
I never Bible bashed. But I was a sister, and we did other dumb things instead, like engaging in microaggressions against each other.
On my mission, bible-bashing was mostly viewed as a form of recreation, like employing wild door approaches and selecting the suspicious people to sit next to on the bus so you could feel ’em squirm. . . . I think the typical 19-year-old male has some evil in him.
I’ve personally been guilty of “winning” at least two debates with Christian opponents who started to question their own faith in Christ thanks to my tireless efforts. . . . Not a great feeling I must admit.
I think the thing that is missing when you are trying to “win” is the listening.