I Was Wrong, and A Change

September 30, 2014

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No, this is not the post where I admit I have been wrong about whatever you think I am wrong about. Sorry to disappoint you.

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The longer I live, the more I realise how little I know. I also find I am less convinced I am absolutely right about things. It is not that I have huge doubts, but I have learned life is not nearly as neat and easy to understand as I thought it was. Life is not black and white. Neither is it about greys. Life is full of colours, including some beyond our ability to see. We know in part, and sometimes it is a very small part.

In the past, I was rather arrogant about what I knew thought to be true. I still believe much of what I believed a few decades ago, but I have changed what I believe on more than a couple of things. Even when I am sure, I am less adamant about my beliefs for two reasons. 1) Based on experience, I know I could be wrong. 2) Even if I am right, offering grace to those who are “wrong” is God’s will.

I am not suggesting nothing matters, nor am I saying we should not argue about certain important issues. What I am suggesting is the list of important issues may not be what we think. Much of what we put on that list God does not, and some of what God puts on the list we want to ignore. What I mean was said nicely by Marco Antonio de Dominis in 1617 AD “In necessary things unity; in uncertain things freedom; in everything compassion.” The challenges are figuring out what is “necessary,” what is “uncertain”, and learning to have compassion in everything.

This is certainly an important issue in marriage. It is also an important criterion for any debate among Christians. In the past, I have allowed just about any comments that were not overtly ugly. Doing this lead to a rather toxic atmosphere in the comments of some posts. In addition to being guilty of allowing this, I fell into it myself at times.

A couple of weeks ago I made a change. I removed the comments of one person who had posted under almost a dozen accounts over the last 18 months. I also removed all replies to his comments, including what I said. I have not removed any other comments, but some of what I left would not be allowed now. Disagree all you like, but be nice about it.

Additionally, I will apply the same standard across the board. I have been guilty of allowing people to say things about me and my comments I would not allow them to say about anyone else. This is confusing, and it encourages rudeness. 

I know in part, and I do my very best to share only truth. I know I have failed in that, I just do not know where. As “a teacher”, I know I will be held accountable by God. I also know we are all held responsible for our own beliefs, regardless of what influenced those beliefs. A wise man holds his beliefs lightly, and checks them often.

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