Give Up

i read an article a while ago that called me to think about those things in my life i constantly need to give up…if i want to be happy…if i want to have a healthy way of interacting with others…if i want to keep my life in balance.   the more i have thought about that article, the more i think about the genius of the discipline of surrendering.

maybe god really does know something about the kind of life his creation needs to experience.  it’s time to face some reality…

we need to surrender our constant need to be right.

being “right” is such a position of power.   being right (or at least believing we are right) communicates a position of superiority.  being certain that my truth (my insight, my opinion, my take, my view, my judgment) is more right than your truth is dangerous ground to be walking on.

this kind of intellectual path can turn quickly into the slippery slope of divisiveness and broken relationships and judgmentalism and rejection.   not to mention the unappealing arrogance that gets blatantly flaunted.  it’s just not pretty.

be reminded of this:

Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.  In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus:  Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage; rather, he made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant.  Philippians 2:3-7

look.  i’m a very opinionated guy.   you just don’t know it.

i don’t wander in the dark very often.  when i don’t understand something, i dig until i can come up with a position.  i am a student of the bible and of culture.  in my heart of hearts, i generally think i’m right.

but i’ve learned to leave room.  room to learn from others.  room to admit i don’t have perfect knowledge.  room to have my mind changed.  room to confess the sin of intellectual arrogance.  room to accept that others might not see things the way i do.  room to affirm that the perspective someone else may have can be completely true for them.

i have learned that i can peacefully and graciously co-exist with those whose opinions, judgments, traditions, customs and beliefs may be different than my own.

and i have come to understand that one’s truth is deeply and profoundly influenced by the filter of who we are, where we have come from, and what has happened to us along the way.

and the greatest of these is love.  i think god really means that.

(i recognize the danger of letting our personal reality define scripture…rather than letting scripture define our reality.  i am not writing here about the “objective” truth found in the bible, although some of what i have written even applies to our interpretation of revelation…as risky as that might be.)


One thought on “Give Up

  1. Good thoughts Mike. I think you touch on the human tendency toward gnosticism and intellectual arrogance along with it. The Bible speaks of objective truth but we are subjective beings who interpret through a tarnished filter. Sometimes I wonder if the Holy Spirit promotes schizophrenia because He is supposed to guide us to know the truth but look how many variations of christians in existence!!! Ultimate truth is a Person- Jesus and He in unity with His Father demonstrates love as the grounding for truth. Just some thoughts you stirred my friend.

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