Did you ever find yourself in a bad place and wonder how you got there? By bad place, I mean a place that was bad for you; it could be a physical place or an emotional place. Somehow, through a series of decisions, you had arrived there without even noticing what was happening on the way. Maybe the steps were tiny, but you walked enough of those tiny steps to arrive at a bad place.
A couple of things happened today to make me think about this personally. First of all I saw an article questioning the reality of so many Christians watching things of an immoral nature. I remember a day when we were watching TV with a group of people, and the subject material became a little questionable. This was when we had teenagers at home. We sat there with them, not wanting to be bad parents, but after the guests left, Jim unhooked the TV and put it into the basement. We could not handle the pressure of dealing with all the choices – too much ungodliness on TV even then, and we did not want people to think we thought it was OK. Too bad we didn’t have the courage to do it while the guests were there. But you get my point. Or points. Peer pressure makes it difficult sometimes to make right choices. And if our world thinks a certain TV show or movie is OK, even if we are troubled by it, wondering how watching it can be consistent with godliness, we do it anyway…little steps at a time.
Then in my reading through the Bible chronologically, I am taking an up close look at the life of David. Today I read the passage in II Samuel 21 where David became exhausted in battle, and his men told him this, “Never again will you go out with us to battle, that the lamp of Israel will not be extinguished.” And it appeared that David allowed them to make this decision for him. You know what happened later; he did not go to battle and got in trouble with Bathsheba. Sometimes, perhaps too often, we allow others to make decisions for us without thinking through the consequences of those decisions.
Today I have been reminded that it is so easy to rationalize our decision making, until we don’t give a lot of time thinking about what would honor God, what holiness would look like in this minute. I see so many believers putting a two piece bathing suit on a toddler and the next year and the next until she wants a teeny bikini as a teenager, and those choices affect all of what she thinks is appropriate. A discussion of godliness doesn’t come near her appearance. I’m not picking on girls now. Just in general, it seems as though we, even as believers, think it is important to be seen as sexy, to be able to talk about the sexy TV shows, and I remember feeling this, too embarrassed to bring up the topic of holiness or godliness. But I sit here behind my computer screen and today I can say these things. And be concerned because of how true I believe they are.
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