“‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”— Matthew 22:37-40
British statesman and financier Cecil Rhodes, whose fortune was used to endow the world-famous Rhodes Scholarships, was known as a stickler for correct dress. His convictions on attire, however, were second to his care for someone else’s feelings.
This became apparent one evening when a young man invited to dine with Rhodes arrived on a late train and had to go directly to Rhodes’ home in his travel-strained clothes. He arrived, embarrassed to find the other guests wearing full evening dress. Just then, Rhodes appeared in a shabby old blue suit. He heard about his guest’s dilemma and wanted him to feel comfortable.
Most would argue that convictions are a good thing. It’s crucial, however, to prioritize our convictions and focus on what’s really important. Take, for example, music in our churches. Many feel convicted that this or that kind of music is the best, so they decide to fight that battle to the death – destroying relationships and breaking fellowship over the issue.
But the truth is we can have convictions without letting those convictions override our biblical duties to love others and seek unity. Keep your convictions prioritized and remember what’s most important in life: loving God and loving people.
Ask God to help you prioritize your convictions and be humble enough to keep them from destroying relationships.
Questions for Thought
When you think about the arguments you’ve had over your convictions, were your convictions biblical or simply based on a preference?
What’s one conviction you’ve allowed to overtake something that’s really important?