I like being right. As a Christian, truth is important to me, and I have a distaste for false teachings.
Unfortunately, this need to be right has gotten me into trouble. My stubborn insistence on being right sometimes gets in the way of God’s purposes. For many years when I saw other people—Christian and non—expressing beliefs that I knew were not right, my first impulse was to correct them. My unspoken mentality was: You’re wrong. I’m right. Let me fix you.
Outcome? I walked away convinced I had won the argument. The other person just…walked away. I lost a friend.
I bring this up, because I see this happening a lot, particularly online. The “I’m right; you’re wrong” mentality comes in many forms. “God told me to say this.” “If you disagree with me, you’re disagreeing with the word of God.” “I’m more educated, informed, intelligent than you.” Yada, yada.
Setting people straight has terrible costs. Here are a few:
- We lose friends—friends we were meant to win to Jesus.
- People walk away with a distaste for Christianity.
- We don’t grow because we lack the humility to learn from someone who disagrees with us.
We grow by asking questions. We grow by seeking to understand. We grow by listening. At the end of the day, we may still disagree, but at least we’ve all moved forward in our journey.
Each of us is a work in progress. No matter how anointed, gifted, educated or spiritual we are, at some level, we’re all right, and, at some level, we’re all wrong. It’s called being human. Every person has something to teach us—if we’re willing to learn.