It’s arrogant to believe we know everything. Wisdom reminds us to stay humble and open to the differing perspectives of others. But remaining open-minded doesn’t mean anything goes, and there’s still a place to make righteous judgments.
To be sure, it’s often our pride that keeps us closed-minded and resistant to accepting the influence of others. Or perhaps it’s the fear of being challenged and having our foundational assumptions questioned. But either way we risk being taken out by our blind spots when we don’t hold the possibility of learning something new.
At the same time, remaining open to influence doesn’t mean we can’t critically examine the things presented to us.
For example, we might commit to expanding our palate and trying new foods. But we can still discern the types of food we eat and decline if certain ingredients are not okay with us. And it’s not being closed-minded to make such a judgment.
And the same is true throughout our life and relationships.
On the one hand, we remain open to considering something new. But, in considering it, we might determine it’s not compatible with who we are or who God has called us to be. And it’s not bigoted to reject it at this point. It’s neither a blind rejection nor an uncritical acceptance, but rather a righteous judgment on the matter.
We keep ourselves in a small box of limitations when we don’t stay open to fresh ideas. And our own narrow-mindedness might become a house of cards that eventually crashes down on itself.
But we’re left simply chasing the wind when we feel we must accept every new idea that comes our way. New is not necessarily better, especially when it discounts the wisdom of the past.
In the end, stay open-minded and willing to consider new perspectives. But don’t neglect your responsibility to still make wise judgments. Everything is not good just because it’s new.