Refusing to Accept Our Contradictions

Sometimes contradictions seems to be all around us. Maybe you have even found yourself in the middle of one. Here are a few examples:

  • A lawyer who has no will.
  • A funeral home director who gives no thought about his own death and funeral.
  • An agent who sells retirement plans but has no retirement plan for his own family.contradiction.jpg
  • A medical doctor who constantly deals with the health issues of others but gets no exercise and is in poor physical shape.
  • A counselor whose most significant relationships are a mess.
  • A leader who only wants to maintain the status quo.
  • A teacher who has stopped learning.
  • A financial planner who mismanages his family’s money.
  • A nutrition expert who eats only junk food.
  • A minister who has no faith in God.
  • A child of God who does not love others.
  • A Christian who does not intentionally seek to follow Jesus daily.

One question I might ask myself is, “Are there contradictions in my life that are destroying my credibility?” Perhaps a blind spot that so many of us have in common is our failure to see the glaring contradictions in our lives.

Could it be that one of us has a contradiction that is so obvious that others cannot figure out how we could possibly miss it? What if you were to seriously address this in your own life?


Question:

Why are the contradictions in our lives so difficult at times to detect? Can you think of a time in your life when you saw a contradiction and intentionally took steps to address it?

  

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5 thoughts on “Refusing to Accept Our Contradictions

  1. Over the last several months I’ve faced the realization that I’m not as personable as I could be and that I’m selfish and can tend to spend a lot of time in my head. I’ve taken deliberate steps at being more friendly to those around me and I’ve gotten out of my comfort zone. When invited out to dinner with some folks after church, I accepted their invitation when normally I would have politely excused myself. I was also honest with a couple of people at church about my shortcomings and it changed our relationship. Now, when I walk in church, I make a point of speaking and if I don’t, they reach out to me. I also make myself vulnerable by asking people for help and advice and deferring to others.

    As to why the contradictions are so hard to detect, I think it’s because it’s more painful to admit them. It’s easier to cover them over or to excuse them as “not being that bad” or “just the way I am”, figuring that others accept us as we are. In many cases, people do accept us, but we still could be causing them much pain and/or inconvenience. In the end, by putting ourselves in a position in which people either can’t or won’t tell us what we need to hear, we deny ourselves the opportunity to be better people.

    • Pat, your first paragraph is huge! I am really impressed with your willingness to face this tendency but to also address it. Taking such deliberate steps speaks so much for your own sense of authenticity.

      I am also impressed with your willingness to talk with this couple at church. You describe it as changing your relationship. Wow. I wonder if they have not been moved by your transparency and the humility that it takes to address something in your own life.

      Thank you so much for sharing this comment. This was very encouraging today.

      • Thanks, Jim. Believe me, it hasn’t been an easy road. The most painful part has been seeing myself as I really am and then purposing to do something about it. At times, I still slip into my old habits, but at least I’m much more conscious of it and I have internal dialogue going on where I try to talk myself out of the rut. I suspect like anything else, it will take a long time for this to come naturally and it may never come naturally. What can become natural is the correction of the behavior. At least I hope so….

  2. Pat, I have found in my own life that some of the roads that are the most difficult and most painful often are most significant. I am with you on those old habits. The ruts are deep. Yet, I have found that over time, the old habits are exposed for what they are–promising much more than they ever could or will deliver. Thanks.

  3. The Third Commandment “Do not take your Lord’s name in vain,” is the law against living a contradiction life; that is, do not say that God is my God (take your Lord’s name), and then break one of the remaining seven laws (in vain). The first two Commandments (1) No other spiritual God (, and (2) no other physical god (idols), is a logical progression of “importance” in that if Law One were kept, laws 2-10 would also be kept by natural law of creation (law one – Spirit), law two – Physical), law 3 (living Physically the Spirit), and laws 4 through 9, specific laws to sustain the society through God’s spiritual direction. Then, #10, to systematically and frequently, rest from the Physical man, to meditate on the Spiritual. This was God’s direct guidance to His chosen people, in the Old.

    Coming forward to the New, it has been said that Jesus expanded the Old, with his teachings doing away with the Old. I reject this. Jesus “fulfilled the law” (his quote) by His Spiritual sacrifice, replacing Physical sacrifices of bulls and goats, so that ALL humanity (from day one to the end of physical Earth), including God’s chosen, are part of the Kingdom of God. In doing so, as illustrated in the cumulative sermons on the mountains, he emphasized the heart of man, in fulfilling these commandment (which were contained in the original 10 commandments). That’s the Good News (Jesus’ sacrifice for all for the Father to be with imperfection) that the ONE commandment Jesus gave us: to present this to all the Earth. Then, those that believe, are saved (those that reject are condemned). That’s all there is to it. Everything else is thoughts of man, although Spirit directed in all writings in the New, and many teachings how to live. Praise God for having chosen us to teach this simple truth for all adults to believe at whatever level they are able.