Click For Photo: https://dwightlongenecker.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/03/e-e-cummings.jpg
There is a little quote that changed my life. I’ve written about it before, but the old quotes like the old jokes are the best.
It is F.D.Maurice’s dictum that “A man is most often right in what he affirms and wrong in what he denies.” I discovered this when I was in my first year of studies at Oxford. I had an attic room in a big old Victorian mansion overlooking the Banbury Road. I was being confronted with a whole range of stuff that was alien to my Bob Jones University world. I was receiving an education in the fullest way–by being plunged into a different country and a different culture.
Modernism - Catholicism - Set - Values - Standards
I was being confronted with modernism and Catholicism as well as a worldly set of values and standards with which I had to cope. The tendency when being confronted with new stuff is to close down, circle the wagons, take out the musket and take aim. But F.D.Maurice’s open minded and truly liberal (in the best sense) little rule change all that in me.
I began to see that much of the Protestant fundamentalist world in which I had been raised was conditioned upon certain negativities. As Protestants they protested. That’s what they do. Too often their views were determined by what they were against more than what they were for. But when they were for something they were joyful, positive good and powerful. When they were against they were negative, sour, condemnatory and it must be said, pretty self righteously foul.
Rule - Something - Faults - Benefit - Doubt
So I adopted this little rule. I would affirm not deny. When presented with something new I would look for what was beautiful, good and true–not the faults. I would give the benefit of the doubt, and I came to realize that even my worst enemies at least meant...
Wake Up To Breaking News!
Vote for gridlock, it's our only hope!