Today’s Gospel: Mark 8:27-33
Do you embrace only those ideas which support your point of view? Do you ignore perspectives that challenge your vision of the truth?
As a young mother, I continually gravitated toward friendships that made me feel as if all my choices were the right ones. I avoided anyone whose lifestyle or conversation seemed to challenge my faith or force me to consider any “gray area” or painful truth. I can still see my little group of friends standing together waiting for our kids outside the school — all dressed the same, all talking about the same subjects. While that life was comforting, it did not allow me to grow.
Now that I am older and a bit more confident, I know that I don’t know everything. And I’m okay with that. I recognize that I’m stronger when I consider many points of view and acknowledge that I am still learning. I know that I no longer have to “win” a discussion or argument. When I put myself in situations where I have to listen and respond to diverse and sometimes unsettling ideas, I act as an example to my family. By responding to challenges and exhibiting love and understanding, I help everyone I meet draw closer to Christ.
Is there a person that I am avoiding because I am afraid they will challenge my views?
Dear Lord, please help me to face difficulty and challenges with calm strength and faithfulness. Let me not take the easy path or be tempted to reshape truths to suit my desires. The greater the test, the more I wish to reflect Your mercy and grace.
Copyright 2017 Leanne Pankuch
Leanne Pankuch is a cradle Catholic, former catechist, accomplished church vocalist, children’s writer and SCBWI member living in New York’s mid-Hudson Valley. She has a crazy dog, an amazing husband, children, and family, and a degree in English. Her writing has appeared in a variety of media—including the Chicken Soup for the Soul series. Contact her at leannepankuch.com.