“As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another,” the Bible says, and I believe it. (Proverbs 27:17.) Getting things right is important and that’s one of the reasons I try to stay open to hearing things from people I might not agree with.
How the opinion is stated is as important as what is said, though.
Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. … [S]peaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ. (Ephesians 4:2, 15.)
Opinions stated with gentle patience are easier to take, even if they run contrary to what I might think, and can help me understand better. When they are said graciously, they are downright tasty:
Gracious words are a honeycomb,
sweet to the soul and healing to the bones. (Proverbs 16:24.)
But if what I read makes me feel icky – whether in content or tone – then it might be a strong signal I need to stop reading. I don’t need to read “a harsh word [that] stirs up anger.” (Proverbs 15:1.) I need to avoid such words.
So I do.