Monday, June 27, 2011

An Open Letter to the Closed Mind

Dear Friends,
I know that I may like you as a person or love you as a brother or sister, but I struggle to love your closed-minded thinking. It is that arrogant disposition you exude when you think you have everything figured out. You see no room for debate, new evidence, or alternative explanations. You are likely very politically minded. You have decided that this particular issue is of the utmost importance and your particular solution is the only possible solution. I may admire your passion and dedication, but I find it difficult to ignore alternative points of view.
I know that I am not immune to such thinking. This might be why I can see it in you. At different points in my life, I have been sure about things, only to have my misconceptions blasted away by a much more complicated truth. I know in the future that many of the things I think I know now will likely go through a similar process.
In Matthew 13, Jesus did not speak well of closed-minded thinking. He quotes Isaiah who spoke of those who “hear, but never understand” and “see, but never perceive.” Actually it seems to me that Jesus did this quite often. Jesus also discussed how those who hear the gospel but do not understand it are vulnerable to their faith being robbed by evil. Then Jesus told his disciples that their eyes and ears are blessed because they were open to hear and see him.
I am sorry that people around you have not always encouraged you to open your mind. It seems unfortunate to me that the Church in the last century has largely not been in favor of open-mindedness. This is sad to me because it was not always the case in the first ten or so centuries of the Church. Now we tend to band together around people who think the way that we do, which is often very different across different church bodies.
I would like to suggest to you that you are missing out. You are missing the joy that comes from learning about the world. Although your canned explanations help you sleep at night, I pray that you will someday learn to embrace the complexity and simplicity of the God who created a world that is simple and complicated. I also pray this prayer for myself.

1 comment:

  1. Open mindness is believing in God and what the Bible teaches. When people begin to add or take away from Bible is when closed mindness begins to take over.