Before I begin today, I have a riddle for Christians. I will be posting the answer later in the week. See if you can solve it first!
Riddle: What is the house made without hands?
Now, onward to my thought today…
Where do you fit?
We hear a lot about what we should eat, wear, do, say, and even believe in today’s world. ‘Experts’ write books. Commentators on television shows relate the advice of various pundits in Hollywood, New York City, and even educators.
Everyone around us seems determined to decide FOR us what/who we should support.
Today, some people have decided that women should follow a certain path. It always amazes me how the people who claim to want everyone to ‘Do Your Own Thing’ take offense when someone does just that and refuses to allow someone else to direct their path. I witnessed this first in the late 60’s and 70’s.
I made the ‘horrendous’ decision not to burn my bra.
Frankly, I couldn’t see the point. Besides, it may have endangered half the population standing next to me–if not all of them!
Perhaps, that came from being raised by somewhat ‘elderly’ parents. My mother was thirty-eight when she had me (which, in the early fifties was an unusual age to have your first child!) My father was forty-three. Both had undergone hardship: my father suffering through the Army during WWII, and my mother undergoing a disastrous first marriage where her husband hit her…ONCE. (Even then, she knew enough to get out of an abusive marriage and did so, leaving her in financial difficulty.)
Because of this, I may have had a different insight than my contemporaries. I like to think, however, that some of that difference came from the way my parents viewed God. Hebrew 5:11-14-Of whom we have many things to say, and hard to be uttered, seeing ye are dull of hearing. For when the time ye ought to be teachers, you have need that one teach you again which be the first principles of the oracles of God; and become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat. For every one that useth milk is unskilful in the word of righteousness: for he is a babe. But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil.
At eighteen, I had decided to attend a nearby college as a commuter. I knew EVERYTHING…and I decided that I wanted to smoke. (I was never brilliant when it came to rebelling). Now, my parents were not happy with my decision. They enough, however, to tell me that I could do so with certain restrictions. I had to pay for it AND I could only smoke in the living room.
I was positive a cigarette held the elegance to show I had entered maturity. So I ‘flicked my lighter’ (as the saying went). I never really inhaled much as it was horrible to breathe smoke into my lungs. No, I just held that cyclinder in my hand, positive that it made me look like a woman of the world…until someone I wanted to impress asked me why I wanted to be so foolish. That person made me take a hard look at myself.
I ditched smoking immediately. It was expensive. It didn’t do what I thought it would as my parents didn’t have a fit about it. And, I certainly didn’t want to look FOOLISH!!
I believe that had my parents made a huge outcry, I may have continued to practice this rebellion just on principle.
They were wise enough, however, to allow me the chance to spread my wings and witness my own downfall into foolishness.
We need to be careful when dealing with ‘young’ Christians. Those new to the faith don’t need to be bogged down with rules and doctrine right off the bat. They need to be cherished and taught and brought into the fold and started off with the ‘milk’ of the Gospel before attempting to discern the ‘meat’ (where a lot of problems with people begin!)
Having said this, those of us who have been in the faith for some time need to be continually growing. We NEED to study. We NEED to discuss differences and convictions so that we know what to believe. We NEED to see the danger in rebelling while understanding the grace of the cross.
Whether you are at the ‘milk’ stage or the ‘meat’ stage, it is good to remember that God loves us even when we rebel. It is also good to recognize he sometimes places a boulder in our path to illustrate our foolishness.
So where are you today?