It can be hard to exercise our own good conscience
without being too strongly influenced by the opinions of others. How do we do that?
A. OPINIONS GIVEN IN GOOD FAITH:
Sometimes, of course, someone may be giving us negative input and may in fact be right. It does happen. Or they may be mostly right, but still wrong about the final decision we must make.
IF you feel they really try to UNDERSTAND THE ISSUE, AND YOU, and treat the issue and you with some respect, then they are likely worth some attention. They might be wrong, might have prejudices or blind spots, but are still probably worth some serious attention.
We have to be able to listen to and evaluate good-faith input without automatically agreeing. And sometimes we have to go ahead with our own conviction anyway.
B. THE DANGER OF MAKING MISTAKES:
C. ARE THERE SOME PEOPLE WE SHOULD NOT LISTEN TO?
Besides – well, people talk. Even without our permission! And people will think and say stupid things. But if ignorant, OR hateful, that input (or gossip) should be allowed to carry little or no weight. It’s time for the old saying, “Who made you the boss of me?”The point is - before God we really do have freedom to honor our own convictions and our own conscience - AND our own choices. In fact, we are required to.Click To TweetIf they lack a minimum of courteous respect (and way too many people in all of our lives do lack genuine respect for us and our situations) then their opinions about us are probably not worth much. We still try to love them and treat them nicely. But sometimes that’s easier said than done; and sometimes it’s probably not worth the effort to have them in our lives.
But the point is – before God we really do have freedom to honor our own convictions
and our own conscience – AND our own choices. In fact, we are required to.
So I try to be nice to some certain people, and I also try to not let their prejudices or even contempt carry more weight than is appropriate.
- Forgive Yourself, Welcome Yourself, Improve Your Relationship
- We Must Lift Our Voices While We Lay Down Our Swords – No Religious Bullies
- If You Do Not Love Your Neighbor – Whom You CAN See – Can You Love God?
- “With Malice Toward None” – A Necessary Standard (Abraham Lincoln)
- Jesus Rejected Hatred (Howard Thurman)
- We Must Speak Up. “Lift your voice like a trumpet; declare to my people their sins.”