A Corner on the Truth

Remember that what I’m telling you are only my opinions,  but I am telling them to you very vehemently because they are my vehement opinions. I don’t have any mild opinions. ~ Allen Reid McGinnis

I was named Counseling Director of a crisis intervention center when I was 22.  I trained and  supervised a volunteer counseling staff of 65 and paid staff of 4 in a city of 180,000. I was completely unqualified. I had a Psych degree and I interviewed well. At 22, I lacked both the wisdom and the life experience for the job. What I didn’t lack was opinions.

That’s the thing about opinions  – we all have them. And we all think  we’re right or presumably we’d change them. What I share here at Two Minutes of Grace are my opinions.

If I weren’t limited to 2 minutes, I would begin every post with something like this:

I want to emphasize –  and please keep this in mind when you read my blog, or any blog, or listen to a sermon or read a book –  nobody speaks officially for God. God is more than able and willing to speak to you Himself.

I can tell you things that I’ve come to believe with every fiber of my being, and you can disagree with every fiber of yours. And we can still extend respect and grace to each other. If anything I say doesn’t square with what you believe, my encouragement is to give it some prayerful consideration and then assimilate it or dismiss it. I’ll do the same when I read your thoughts.

Regardless of how fervently an opinion is held, it is still that, an opinion.

The most interesting people I know have a lot of opinions.

The smartest people I know, know that they have a lot of opinions – and acknowledge them for what they are – opinions.

The wisest people I know have core convictions and springing from those convictions are many opinions which they hold onto loosely enough that they’re open to the idea that they may be wrong.

Truth. Yes and No. Yes –  it will set you free. No – no one has a corner on it.

Author: Debbie

A former counselor and public speaker, I'm grateful for many, many things - God's grace most of all!

47 thoughts on “A Corner on the Truth”

  1. I’ve come back for seconds.

    Today has been one of those days 🙂

    Blessings
    ann

    P.S. A part of my story is that I walked away from God because I couldn’t tell the difference between His truth and what my church taught. I walked away into the desert and lived there for a while. Fortunately for me, He didn’t walk away from me!

    1. Hello dear Ann –
      It sounds like we have some similarities in our story.
      Thank you for sharing this beautiful video.
      My internet has been down (and I was, too, for a day or so) so I just now have been able to watch it!

  2. I’m with Ann in agreeing with your, “No one speaks officially for God.” Not even when we couch our statements with, “The Bible says….”
    John AT Robinson may not be everyone’s favourite Bishop, but he did write about Christians and chocolate (yes, that made me sit up). He said we should be hard-centred chocolates: firm at the centre; convinced about our faith and our core beliefs, but soft and fuzzy at the edges, open to new ideas, and the opinions of others. Sadly, he said, we are too often like soft-centred chocolates: hardest on the outside; we know what we DON”T believe, what we refuse to accept, and who we won’t listen to, but rather fuzzy about what we do believe and what our core values are. As a result our opinions get rather too big for their boots.
    But as the other Debbie pointed out, only you could write about opinions in such a grace-filled way.
    Thank you for always pointing out the way of grace to us.

    1. Hello Ian –
      What a wonderful (sad but I’m afraid quite often accurate) analogy re: Christians and chocolates.
      I’ve read bits and pieces of Honest to God but must confess that’s about all I’ve read of Bishop Robinson’s writings.
      Thank you for adding this. I’m intrigued.
      Having been very active in a many churches with vastly differing convictions on ‘the edges’, I’m not shy at all about the Bible, but I’ve become shy of “The Bible says…” as interpreted by another.
      Thank you for adding your wise words here,
      Debbie

  3. In my opinion Deb this is a very sound word :wink:. I am convinced that when we get to Heaven we will all find out we were wrong about something. The amazing thing about His grace is that as long as we have entrusted ourselves to it He will still let us in with all our wrong opinions.

    1. Hey there Pastor J!
      My guess (it’s only a guess, not even an opinion) is that when we get to heaven, none of it will matter one whit. 😀
      Oh yes, my friend, that is what’s so completely amazing about grace!
      Debbie

  4. Debbie– I love this. I’m sending it to a friend. We don’t always agree and I’m thinking that what I am learning is not how to disagree but how to listen and pray for us both. My opinions are of the lightning bolt variety. They probably don’t need to be said all that often.

  5. Well said Debbie! Thank you for the reminder that what we say is our opinion not fact. I think sometimes we think alike. I also think that this blog is wonderful!

    Blessings
    Greg

  6. Well said. I have an atheist in our home and so I am getting lots of practice at grace. I stumble a lot, but I can see God’s refining work moving me forward. I am really immersed in the course: Learning how to disagree with gentleness and respect. I am trusting that God will use this for good in both my life and my atheist son’s life… Maybe he’ll have a blog one day titled: I Used to be an Atheist. So far our other two children are walking the narrow path with my husband and me. Wendy

    1. Hello Wendy!
      How wise of you to walk in grace and love and gentleness. A lesson for me and for all.
      I look forward to that blog with you!
      Tonight I send my prayers for you both.
      Hope and courage and love to you, Wendy,
      ~ Debbie

  7. I really got a chuckle out of the quote at the beginning! Only you, gracious FF, could write about opinions in such a grace-filled way. 🙂 Thank you! It reminds me to not be offended by opinions . ..to not let opinions push my buttons, because they are just opinions. It’s okay. And in the end, all the opinions will fade away, but the Truth will remain. God bless you and grace you today! love and prayers!

    1. Dearest Deb –
      It’s kind of funny that I picked this quote because it doesn’t describe me at all. I’m many things, but rarely would anyone who knows me describe me as vehement. I think I used to be a bit, but I’ve just plain been wrong too often to continue on that course. 😉
      I love your unique application to not be offended by opinions because they are just opinions.
      It’s like being plummeted with marshmallows. While it can be tiresome, it isn’t damaging unless we open our mouths and let them fill us! 😀
      Yes, “opinions will fade away, but the Truth will remain”
      Well said my grace-filled friend!
      Love to you and Aub!
      ~ Debbie

      1. I love the marshmallow idea. Next time I have someone attacking me with his or her opinions I shall picture them as marshmallows. But just mustn’t laugh.

  8. Thanks kindly, Dear Debbie 🙂

    I like this!!
    “I want to emphasize – and please keep this in mind when you read my blog, or any blog, or listen to a sermon or read a book – nobody speaks officially for God. God is more than able and willing to speak to you Himself.

    I can tell you things that I’ve come to believe with every fiber of my being, and you can disagree with every fiber of yours. And we can still extend respect and grace to each other. If anything I say doesn’t square with what you believe, my encouragement is to give it some prayerful consideration and then assimilate it or dismiss it. I’ll do the same when I read your thoughts.”

    Opinions are ours to hold, and sometimes we can be wrong and strong, but we should always be respectful of each other.

    We don’t ever have to agree on everything, but I love coming around knowing I can always find grace here 🙂

    Great post! Wonderful points. We can have much more meaningful relationships if we put them into practice.

    “The wisest people I know have core convictions and springing from those convictions are many opinions which they hold onto loosely enough that they’re open to the idea that they may be wrong.”
    This is deep. Very, very deep. The most educated was taught by someone. We can all learn from each other. 🙂

    Thanks for sharing.

    Blessings
    ann

    1. Dear Ann –
      Now it’s my turn to quote you:
      “Opinions are ours to hold, and sometimes we can be wrong and strong, but we should always be respectful of each other.”
      Amen, my friend!
      grace to you as you gently share His love with us,
      ~ Debbie

  9. Amen! The more I learn, the more I “know,” the more I realize how much I don’t know! Humility is a good starting point in any idea exchange.
    Thanks for a wise and helpful post:)
    Judy

    1. Hello Judy!
      I had no idea that the older I got, the less I would “know” but it’s become a comfortable truth for me. You are so very right (in my opinion :D) – humility is a good – probably a vital – starting point if we’re going to have any true exchange of ideas.
      Without humility our conversations, if they involve differing opinions, become much like verbal racquetball with lots of slamming and ducking.
      Thank you for being here and for adding this key point to the discussion.
      Pride is very hard of hearing.
      ~ Debbie

  10. Thank you for this Debbie. It’s difficult sometimes, when I find myself respecting others opinions who differ from mine, but they don’t respect mine. It’s good to see you put this into words. Someone’s gotta say it. 🙂

    1. Lori –
      Oh yes, that’s where the rub comes in, isn’t it? Even when we interact with others with respect and grace, it certainly doesn’t guarantee it will be reciprocated. That’s the true test of grace, I suppose.
      Thank you for adding that perspective, Lori.
      ~ Debbie

  11. This is Marvelous, Sis Debbie–that’s my vehement opinion and it’s also Truth! As I’ve gotten older and wiser, particularly about my faith, I’ve learned that prefaces are a respectful obligation I must honor (though admittedly, I sometimes forget, so you’re welcome to remind me)–and that they often open the window for fresh air: my listener may hear me better, and I too may get a new perspective on truth/opinions. God bless you most abundantly today, and always–love, sis Caddo Delight

    By the way–if you’re interested, the other Deb and I have now started the Night Owl Gals Club (NOG)–membership is free, and there’s no requirement to attend regularly (otherwise I’d be in a coma by now).

    1. Dear Caddo of the poetic truth,
      Closed minds (windows) lead to a stuffy brain.
      You are a wise woman to open yours!
      I would love to join NOG on the rare occasions my internet will allow!
      What do I bring? 😀
      love to you as you pen and pray,
      ~ Debbie

      1. Toothpicks to hold everyone’s eyes open would useful–and maybe an elixir to boost energy and soothe grumpiness for the mornings!

    2. Lots of votes for fresh air! Caddo, my wise one … just passing through the comment zone. Good to see you here. I’m glad the aliens dropped you in the proper section today. Crop circles hard to escape i’ve been told.

  12. A W E S O M E !!!! I nominate you for Dalai Lama, do you mind? You’ve got it goin’ on … and THAT is my vehement, yet flexible (except in THIS CASE) opinion. Earth Angel, with wisdom of a scholar and a HUGE HEART. Much love … i get SO much from Two Minutes of Grace.

    Hi, love … today i’m with MY GOD … i am gardening and looking at plants and birds, and even a bunny come to life on this glorious day of 80 +/- degrees. As my brother wrote, “i’m looking for my parka”. Well, not quite, but i’m reminiscing truth, and the FLOW of opinions and wisdom. By gardening and being with myself quietly i am gaining my Unique Self (nod to HeidiHo).

    I’ll be back writing … i think i have some ideas for iamnotshe. After all, she’s my baby … can’t neglect her. What kind of BLOG MAMA would I BE? xoxoxo mel

    1. Dear Mel –
      You are so fun!
      Thank you, kind friend. 😀
      I thought you’d be back, once you caught your breath!
      much love and grace to you as your garden and grow,
      Debbie
      (Heidi nods back)

  13. I love Jeanne response. That is me also!!! I find that my opinions at age 22 are much different than age 64. At age 22, I was still in the I know everything stage of my life. Everything was black and white. At age 64 and many more years of education under my belt (education translated to living life – things that can’t be found in a book), my opinions are much different. My heart is now open to all opinions and I truly respect the person who differs as I always learn something new. At 64 I believe that God handles every step in our lives no matter what my opinion may be. It brings me a great sense of peace and hopefully a better person. In my opinion, this is a great blog!!

    1. Jill –
      Oh friend, how I love you!
      You are a wise woman – truly.
      Meeting someone at my age – or even your age 😉 that still thinks the same things they thought at 22 is like going to your 30 year high school reunion and seeing a friend that looks just the same as they looked in the yearbook.
      Kind of scary.
      Part of growing up is growing!
      Heidi and I used to lead a workshop we called:
      As Long As You’re Green You’re Growing, But As Soon As You’re Ripe, You Rot
      You’re very green!
      Thank you for your huge heart and kind words,
      love to you and Mr Adventure!
      ~ Debbie

    1. Jeanne –
      You make me smile. 😀
      I’m one of those people who has either little or no opinion – or a big opinion! The older I get the less sure I am about many things and the more certain I am about a few!
      love and grace to you, my friend,
      ~ Debbie

    1. Joss –
      Oh, such a good point you make here. The world is not only better, but yes, safer, when we recognize the difference between truth and our opinions of what is true. 😀
      ~ Debbie

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