Temptation to Conform

It seems harmless - a few girls sitting around talking at work. But soon the conversation turns to gossip. Do you join in, sit silently or walk away?

Someone starts a conversation about what they did over the weekend - things that aren't appropriate for a believer in Christ to do. Do you smile and nod or change the subject?

Everyone else is buying things, watching things, talking about things and sharing things that go against what you've believe. Do you buy, watch, talk about and share them too, or do you try to do what you know is right?

There is often a deep-seeded fear in the heart of a Christian. We're trying to balance our walk with God and our life in the world. This is a dangerous tight rope to walk when everyone around you is complaining, gossiping, watching television and using worldly language.

We're afraid that failing to compromise our standards means we'll fail to fit in. We'll be seen as nuts, religiously fanatical or, worse yet, unworthy. There are times that we're so desperate to be part of something that we'll change our ways, say things we know we shouldn't or shift our views just a little so we're not quite so different from everyone else.

What will other people think?

But compromising our standards isn't the issue - it's about trivializing God's standards. He is unchanging, uncompromising and unwavering. The world's perception of these traits is very different - He is inflexible, unaccepting and old-fashioned. What use is there for His views in our modern world - they just don't see His power and the change He has made in our lives.

I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help. My help cometh from the LORD, which made heaven and earth. He will not suffer thy foot to be moved: he that keepeth thee will not slumber. Psalm 121:1-3

Now think about those standards our Heavenly Father has lovingly wrapped around us:
* He wants us to be focused on Him, not the world.
* He wants us to walk on His path, not the trail the world has carved.
* He wants our thoughts to be pure and holy, not fleeting and perverted like the world.
* He wants our words to be kind and loving, not harsh like the world's.
* He wants us to reflect His purity, not the filth that the world has to offer.

What will conformity truly bring to our lives? What will we achieve by compromising our Christian standards and beliefs? Friendship for a moment? Fleeting praise from the world? A few minutes of closeness with people who have different priorities than ours?

Compromise is easy - standing firm is difficult.
Conformity is simple - having confidence is hard.
Going along with the world seems harmless in the moment, but what is the impact on eternity?

Whose devotion and love would you rather have - a few people here on this earth or the God Who made all earth and heaven? How can we compare the momentary devotion of a human being, which can change in a heartbeat, to the eternal, unending, unchanging love of God?

Doesn't that make conformity seem unnecessary?

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