‘Blind Spots’

Terry Walton



I Was Thinking…

I’m not sure where I first heard it but I’ve said for most of my adult life… “The human capacity for rationalization is beyond measurement.”  We can ‘rationalize’ our way into and out of any situation.  We can ‘justify’ any behavior we desire whether it is appropriate or inappropriate behavior.  It is amazing the power of ‘blind spots’ in our lives.

The Arbinger Institute’s book entitled The Anatomy of Peace writes it this way… “My whole world changed.  It changed because I had chosen a different way of being in the world—a way that needed justification.  Because I needed justification, I began to see everything in a self-justifying way.  Others, myself, the world, my past, my present, my future, my hardships, my responsibilities, my view of everything became transformed—transformed for the purpose of feeling justified.” (P.109)

The Anatomy of Peace goes on to write “the more sure I am that I’m right, the more likely I will actually be mistaken.  My need to be right makes it more likely that I will be wrong.” (P.114)

Pride is a dangerous thing.  I’m not referring to being proud of my grandkids or proud of the good ministry of many of our churches and clergy.  That is a healthy pride.  However, there is a dangerous ‘unhealthy’ pride.  The type of pride that keeps us from admitting our faults; confessing our sins; seeing our blind spots is a ‘cancerous pride’. 

This sort of pride is like a pool of stagnant water…it flows nowhere and the longer it sits the more it stinks.  For water to remain fresh and healthy it must move.  And so it is with our emotional, relational, mental and spiritual health.  If we get stuck in a spot of unhealthy pride…well…we cease to grow.  Blind spots grow well where we no longer grow.

There must have been a real problem with ‘cancerous pride’ in Solomon’s day.  The book of Proverbs is full of considerations about pride.  “When pride comes, then comes disgrace; but wisdom is with the humble.” (11:2) “Pride goes before destruction and a haughty spirit before a fall.” (16:18) “A person’s pride will bring humiliation, but one who is lowly in spirit will obtain honor.” (29:23)

I am concerned about our divided world, country and denomination.  If we’d all lower our ‘cancerous pride’ and humbly reach out to each other, it might surprise us all what the Holy Spirit will do as we give the Spirit room to work.  “When our hearts are at war, we tend to exaggerate others’ faults; that’s what we call ‘horribilizing’.  We also tend to exaggerate the differences between ourselves and those we are blaming.  We see little in common with them, when the reality is that we are similar in many if not most respects.  We also exaggerate the importance of anything that will justify us.” (P.108)

The best prescription I am discovering to help cure ‘cancerous pride’ and the healing of my ‘blind spots’ is found on my knees.  Want you join me?

 Always Thinking…


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