As I begin this blog, I would love to open up conversation about an area of my life that is constantly in need of growth.
If you know me, you know that I have opinions, and I tend to hold to them pretty strongly. When I enter discussions about any of my “hot-button” issues, I am very stubborn and resistant to change.
Certain friends and family members have learned what topics to avoid with me. If they disagree with me, they know that I’m unlikely to change my mind and hear their point of view.
However, on topics that I’m just beginning to explore and gather information on, I can be open-minded. If I feel that my opinions are still being formed, I’m likely to listen to just about any reasonable voice in an effort to have the “right” answer.
Having the right answer and being right is something I’ve always valued. I pursue knowledge in order to be right. However, it’s been on my mind a lot lately that being right is not what it’s all about. The Pharisees had strong opinions and used their strong opinions to keep people down. Jesus condemned them for that. Their opinions were so strong about the Sabbath for instance, that they couldn’t see the bigger picture of what Jesus was doing when He healed a man on their day of rest.
Once I have decided that I have the “right” answer, I hang onto it so tightly that no one can budge me. I clench my fists and close myself off to further growth on that topic / issue.
This post is a statement that from here on out, especially as I blog about things that have been on my mind, I would like to loosen my grip. To allow myself to be more open to truth outside of my rigidly held opinions.
If Peter hadn’t loosened his grip, he wouldn’t have gone to Cornelius with the Gospel to open up the Kingdom to people of every nation and ethnicity.
If Paul hadn’t loosened his grip, he would have dismissed the vision of Christ that was calling him to a better life.
In a way, I believe this goes hand in hand with humility. Humility is that unattainable buzzword that it seems every Christian struggles to attain. Thinking of yourself with sober judgment. Not thinking too highly of yourself. Putting the needs of others above the needs of self. Humility will probably be another blog post down the road, but I thought I’d at least mention it here.
My nature is to anticipate reactions of things before I do them. As I think about this blog post, my most anticipated reaction would be one that talks about when it is appropriate to NOT loosen our grip on our beliefs and opinions. So, the question I ask to you, the reader, is this:
How do you discern when a belief or opinion needs to be held tightly or loosely?
I have some thoughts on that question, but in an attempt to listen and learn before I speak, I’ll wait for responses and continue the discussion in the Comments section.
May we all loosen our grips when appropriate, and spur one another on towards more growth in Christ.