There’s a statement I’ve been thinking about that contains three words that I don’t think we use enough, it’s not the phrase that most people think of, I bet your thinking it’s that phrase I love you. No it’s not that one. Speaking of that phrase I’ve noticed that most people will say love you and miss out the I, is that because they don’t really love the person they are speaking too or is it just laziness, it’s more likely the latter rather than the former in my view and it depends on context I suppose. Anyway those three little words aren’t the words I’m thinking of.
I’m thinking of a statement or phrase I should use more than I do, and I know why I don’t. Anyway , here’s examples of where it might be used, or more likely when I should use it. You ask yourself what your response would be to these questions.
Do you think the Conservatives will get in again at the next General Election?
What do you think of penal substitution?
Should milk or water be put in a cup of tea first when making it?
What most of us tend to do when answering a question is come up with a positive or negative opinion on these kind of questions, but there is a third option that many of us rarely use because we are expected to have an opinion on anything and everything yes you’ve guessed it I’m sure, the phrase I was referring to earlier was I DON’T KNOW.
How many times people have asked you something expecting an answer of some description from you and rather than saying I don’t know you come back with a yes or no, or some convoluted answer that’s meant to sound intelligent when in reality you simply have no answer, you haven’t thought about the question long enough, not had the experience or never really thought the questions was necessary. I certainly have been in that position.
We as human beings thirst for knowledge, knowledge means power and to a large extent gives us a sense of security. None of us want to look stupid in front of our friends or family when we simply don’t have an answer or an opinion to something. Our problem with our thirst for knowledge though is that it can lead to pride. Ever come across someone who seems to have an opinion about everything, do they get on your nerves, it’s happened to me, mind you when I was in my early 20’s I could be just as bad. I’m more careful now not to get into arguments where the need to be right all the time is the goal. Because at the end of the day none of us know everything. It’s freeing to sometimes say I don’t know, yes it’s disconcerting to others, leaves you with a sense of uncertainty but that’s ok.
Over the last few years I’ve learnt that it’s ok to not know everything, I’ve found it very liberating personally. Does it really matter that I don’t have the answers or that people don’t look to me for an answer or be the answer. The truth is that sometimes there is no right or wrong answer there is the unknown, we can’t possibly know everything about anything or anyone for that matter. So don’t be afraid of using that phrase no matter what others might think.
Regarding the questions I listed above the first question is speculative, the second question involves some theological knowledge and the third question I ask is it really that important whether the milk is put in before the water for a cuppa?
OK I suppose you want to know what my answer would be to the three questions I listed above.
Well, the answer to all 3 is I just don’t know.