02 April 2009

Open to Judgment

I've been thinking about a blog post that a family member wrote. It's below.
You probably think you know the answers to these, but I'm a better judge of that than you, and you can't convince me otherwise

Two things people would answer "Yes" to, when they should say "No":

1 - Are you a good judge of people?

I used to think I was a good judge of people until a close friend and idol of mine went to jail for conspiracy to commit triple murders and then another friend was discovered, by me, to have stolen a half million dollars from the company we worked for at the time.

2 - Are you open-minded?

I think people are open-minded about things they don't yet have an opinion on, but not so much on things they've already made up their mind about. When is the last time YOU had your mind changed by someone?

I tried to think about the last time that I changed my mind about something important other than at work. (I change my mind all the time at work; it's part of the job.)

Anyway, I thought of the big things (non-exhaustive): religion, life, death, love, family, and politics.

I grew up in a liberal Pennsylvania mixed marriage home. I always wondered about other religions since my Dad never received (Catholic) communion at Church.

In the many “talks”, my parents (Mom) told me not to have sex until marriage and that I should use protection if necessary.

The intellectual things that I remembered as a child mainly came from high school. I never had a girlfriend. Actually, I usually sat in the back and watched the other high schoolers make fools of themselves over romantic matters (or other dumb stuff).

For a long time, I remembered just soaking up people’s words (I didn’t/don’t talk much). I thought high school was mostly a farce. (My family thought I was gay. Why does not having a girlfriend equal gay?)

In high school, I rooted for Gov. Dukakis because I thought VP HW Bush, Sr. didn’t care enough about poor people.

As a freshman in college, I joined a non-denominational Christian fellowship (and eventually an a cappella Christian group) because I wanted to understand what they believed. (My first girlfriend was a Southern Baptist from the former group.)

As a junior or senior, I participated in a homosexual bible study series (sponsored by the Rainbow Alliance) to understand what they believed.

When I studied abroad in Mexico, I went a couple of times (actually most Sundays) to a Mormon ecclesial community (church).

I strike up conversations on line (and in person) to try to understand people with different views.

I don’t know when I changed my mind last (except on this blog).

I think I’m open to thoughts, but please, oh please, make a convincing argument and provide some resources (which I will actually read in full, assuming its not over 200 pages).

What is a liberal? One who listens to all and tries to whole-heartedly acquiesce to the Truth. (It’s not the same as giving into the “dictatorship of relativism” since there is a Truth insofar as we truly exist.)

As far as judging people, you have to hold the seat of a judge. In other words, you must have all the relevant facts (evidence), hidden and unhidden, in order to make a proper and just judgment. What’s the criteria, unreasonable doubt?

In practice, I keep this thought in mind, "We reap (and gather in) what we sow."

Notice however, that I didn't say that admonishing is to be avoided. We have a duty to speak the truth to guide against evil.

Put on then, as God's chosen ones, holy and beloved, heartfelt compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience, bearing with one another and forgiving one another, if one has a grievance against another; as the Lord has forgiven you, so must you also do. And over all these put on love, that is, the bond of perfection. And let the peace of Christ control your hearts, the peace into which you were also called in one body. And be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, as in all wisdom you teach and admonish one another, singing psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God. Colossians 3:12-16

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