When I was quick to judge someone growing up or fixed in my belief of how things should go, my grandmother used to say to me, “Circumstances alter cases.”
She would encourage me to look at things from all sides, how it affects everyone involved. To seek first to understand before jumping to conclusions.
After having a friend laugh at me one too many times for falling on my roller skates in grade school, I was ready to end our friendship; my grandmother asked me to reconsider and instead find out why she found it funny.
I learned she often laughed when uncomfortable and that I was one of her favorite friends. Not only were we friends throughout high school, but I learned an important life lesson—I’m not a mind reader and am better served to ask versus jumping to conclusions. Grandma inspired me to be flexible and bend and nourish my relationships rather than break them by having a fixed mindset.
Of course, there are times we need to stick to our guns, but many times, we are better served to be humble and bend when others have been hurt instead of being preoccupied with our own feelings about the matter.
The Bible gives us this wisdom in Psalm 29:1 “Some people refuse to bend when someone corrects them. Eventually, they will break, and there will be no one to repair the damage.”