In Others’ Words: Finding the Right Place and Standing Firm

 

Stand Firm Abraham Lincoln 2016

I remember the first time someone called me “narrow-minded.” 

Now, when I say “the first time,” please don’t get the idea that this happens often. It doesn’t. As a matter of fact, I can’t remember the last time someone called me “narrow-minded,” but I do recall the first time.

I was shocked. Me? Narrow-minded?

I called my good friend Robyn and told her what happened. Her response was quick — straight to the point.

“You’re not narrow-minded, Beth.” Her voice was calm, soothing my unsettled emotions. “You’ve just thought some things through and made up your mind what you believe about them.”

And she was right. There are some things I believe — about God, for example, or about family. My beliefs didn’t come easily — as a matter of fact, some of my beliefs have cost me greatly. I’ve wrestled with them, discussed them with other people, read books by people I agree with and people I don’t agree with … and I’ve made up my own mind where I’m putting my feet, so to speak, and I’m standing firm.

If someone wants to define making a final, well-thought out decision about what you believe as narrow-mindedness, that’s their choice. But that’s not the correct definition of the word. 

We have to stand for something, don’t we? We have to search for truth until we find it … and then both protect it and defend it. We have to decide what we value — be it honesty or grace or kindness or courage — and then stand firm in our convictions. Doing so isn’t narrow-mindness. It’s a choice to live a life that’s founded on something that outlasts our circumstances or our emotional ups and downs.

In Your Words: Where have you “put your feet” and decided to stand firm? What do you value?

 

 

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16 Comments

  1. March 3, 2016, 5:01 am   /  Reply

    Over the years I made many unpopular well-thought out decisions involving my sons. Some of my decisions forced them to not follow the crowd. I hope I passed on the ability for them to stand up and make wise decisions even decisions others consider narrow-minded.

    One day we’ll answer to God for our actions. Thanks for the reminder to slow down and think before acting.

    • March 3, 2016, 8:19 am   /  Reply

      Jackie: Oh, parenting decisions! Yes, they are not always popular with other parents — or our kiddos. I tell my kiddos that peer-pressure exists among parents, too. And that I’m okay with being the “uncool” parent, if need be. And it comes in handy sometimes if they want to say no to something — my husband will take the fall for them. 🙂

  2. March 3, 2016, 5:26 am   /  Reply

    Ah, a firm place to stand. Finding that unmovable place makes all the difference. I’m so thankful for The Rock that holds our feet steady and secure though everything else around us may change.

    • March 3, 2016, 8:21 am   /  Reply

      Dee: Yes, yes, yes. Knowing Who I believe in helps me decided what I believe in … and when I am flexible and when I stand firm.

  3. March 3, 2016, 6:39 am   /  Reply

    Sometimes you just have to put your feet down where you are.

    I don’t consider myself narrow-minded, but someone once said of me, “Trying to get him to look at another view once his mind’s made up is like trying to get a mule into a VW.”

    • March 3, 2016, 7:52 am   /  Reply

      Of course, sometimes I stand firm with my feet planted solidly in my mouth.

      • March 3, 2016, 8:23 am   /  Reply

        Keep ’em coming, Andrew. Keep ’em coming! ROTFL!

    • March 3, 2016, 8:22 am   /  Reply

      Okay, Andrew, that word picture is sticking with me for the rest of the day. 🙂

      • March 3, 2016, 8:32 am   /  Reply

        I actually have seen a live cow in the back seat of an old Chevy sedan. It was being smuggled, got stopped at a VCP, and when asked, the driver said it had been hitch-hiking.

        • March 3, 2016, 9:27 am   /  Reply

          Okay, Andrew. That just made me laugh out loud, right here at my kitchen table. 🙂

        • March 3, 2016, 10:49 pm   /  Reply

          Andrew, Andrew, Andrew … you and your stories … 🙂

  4. March 3, 2016, 8:38 am   /  Reply

    I’m like Andrew sometimes! We have to know where we stand before we can do it. And our choices aren’t always popular.

  5. March 3, 2016, 9:29 am   /  Reply

    Beth, what a powerful post. I think this is one of my favorites of what you’ve written. I have chosen to stand firm on my belief in Jesus. When life overwhelms, my feet are planted on His truth. When people chastise or condemn, I remember His words.

    I loved how your friend shared with you that you weren’t narrow minded; you simply knew what you believed. One of the many things I love about you. 🙂

    • March 3, 2016, 10:50 pm   /  Reply

      Jeanne: To be honest, this post surprised me. As I told Rob, it went someplace I hadn’t expected, but I like where it ended up.
      🙂

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