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February 14 2013

You know the old adages…

There are two sides to every coin.


There are always two sides to every story.

At some point between adolescence and adulthood, these ‘truths’ because so engrained in each of us that we often neglect to see the error in their simplicity.  Quips that were created hope of advancing our perspective on life, and love, and conflict, left us believing that only two sides, two opinions, or two extremes need to be accounted for.

“There are two sides to every issue: one side is right and the other is wrong, but the middle is always evil.” Ayn Rand

Maybe it’s thoughts like Ms. Rand’s that quelled the middle, the third side, from speaking up?

I, for one, disagree with Ms. Rand. I, for one, miss the middle. I, for one, crave the middle’s presence, it’s voice, but mostly it’s ability to help us all remember that our world is complicated and sometimes absolutes are over-rated.

Must voters choose to support either life or choice? What if they choose both?

Must the developing embrace either technology or tradition? What if they can embrace both?

Must women either compliment or be equal to men? What if they want both?

Must the church either raise up it’s theology or the holy spirit? What if they believe in the importance of both?

Must we always pick a side? What if we believe truth and justice lie somewhere in the middle?

On the internet, on the television, in the newspaper, at the dinner table, all I hear clanging incessantly are the loud and undoubtably passionate extremes. Side one and side two insist of provoking fights, stating absolutes, and neglecting the possibility that a third, more moderate, side has any hope. They convince the third side’s quiet legions that they are evil, or worse, a futile minority lacking true passion.

But I, for one, am not ready to give up in the rise of the third side.

Who is with me?

Are you sick of just hearing two sides?  

On what issues do you find yourself embracing the third side? 


  1. I’m with you! Amen. I find myself in the middle when I comes to the biblical womanhood debate. I think the mark of Christian maturity is a balanced perspective that is comfortable with tension and sitting in the middle on many topics. As long as Christ is preeminent, I think the rest is really gray areas. Great quote by Ayn Rand!

  2. I am with you, Lindsey. We seem to want to make every issue a black and white issue when really most things seem to be gray.

  3. I am SO with you.

  4. I am with you. I would like to see of third way rise up between Science and faith. Can people not see that the science we create with our brains is a gift from God? We were created by God. I don’t believe they have to be in conflict.

  5. Erin Mills

    Fantastic post! As someone who has strong opinions, but not the strongest filter, I needed to read this today.

  6. Lindsey, I agree with you completely. I think usually both sides somehow miss the point or the solution. They just get entrenched in the idea that they are right and everyone else is wrong. Whenever I see two sides like that, I assume that there is a third, better side.

  7. Life is not a melodrama. Wouldn’t it be so much easier if it were?

  8. Yes, I’m with you. This is why I write: to explore that third side. And this is why I’m grateful for communities like A Deeper Story. You and I are not alone in “choosing both” on a variety of issues.

  9. I was just talking about this with my family last night, and your post here really helped to clarify my thoughts. Thanks.

  10. YES!!! And …

    Wouldn’t that be a refreshing start to every blog comment? What a great way to encourage creative, constructive dialog.

    I get weary of yabuts and nobuts. *sigh*

  11. Shari

    in the Bible we read of a third fold cord…sometimes this is used to be an example of marriage but I think it should be used for any debate you & me & God….and you say what you think & I say my part & we meet in the middle & do what God says…we need each other & we all need to contribute but in the end we let God lead

    • That is an awesome thought!

  12. Michelle

    I’m so with you. I’m not sure what this kind if thinking stems from, but it seems to be something very strongly “American”.
    It shows up in all of our politics…hence we have few answers and solutions, just the political “shit flinging” the polarized sides take part in. There must be a relationship between this and our cultural way of thinking.

    What’s wrong with finding answers? Where’s the balance? Maybe those answers are not so black-and-white, here-or-there? What’s the aversion to discussions? Why does everything have to be a debate to be to “won?” If we’re trying to win debates I believe we’re actually worried about or own pride and intellectual athletics, not about finding truth. Winning a battle doesn’t say your ideas are correct, it just says you won. Didn’t Jesus turn over this better-than and less-than way of our world? Why do people assume that a variant of applicable belief will “unravel” faith? If that’s the case, is your faith really faith?

    There is a place for the middle ground.


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