I have purposely not made any comments about the controversy surrounding one of my favorite places to eat. I've actively pursued silence, though it has been very difficult.
Can't resist any longer.
I LOVE that place. I so very often salivate and crave their food and we HAVE been known to drive completely out of the way to find one! I LOVE what they stand for. I LOVE that a business is bold enough in their beliefs to go against the "norm" and not open on Sunday. I believe adamantly in the support of freedom of speech. Anyone knows me knows where I stand on the "hot" issue at hand. I FULLY support and believe in the sanctity of marriage as one man and one woman. I am one of the biggest believers in family values. I mean just look at the decisions our family makes daily in regards to living life as set apart and as Biblical as we can. Everyone: you know me. You know what I stand for.
Yet, I didn't eat at "that" favorite restaurant yesterday.
Yes, we only have a tiny "express" in the basement of our campus student union. It would have been VERY inconvenient to have taken 5 kids there yesterday, navigating campus parking and such with babies. I had an excuse.
However, I COULD have done it. Perhaps, I SHOULD have done it.
I'm thrilled with how many people DID show up in support of freedom of speech and family values. I'm thrilled with the stories I've heard of random acts of kindness, conversations, and fellowship that took place.
After all, I believe in what "they" do. I hold dear those same values.
I believe we are living in a VERY fallen world. I lay awake at night (forgive me if I didn't use the right word there...I STILL can't keep lie/lay straight), struggling at times to breathe because of how difficult it is becoming to raise children in this world. Look around. Sin is no longer black and white. We as a country and as individuals have become so blinded by what the world tells us is ok that we often don't even know right from wrong ourselves! Go against what is "norm" is so very difficult to do and it gets harder with each passing minute. Even finding solace and support in our churches is becoming more and more difficult (*note*---generally speaking!).
If you claim Christian beliefs, you are immediately labeled a hater, bigot, hypocrite, etc... regardless of anyone considering your heart.
Yes, MANY cases are evident that the world accepts anything BUT Christianity when they speak of tolerance.
Here we go. I'm going to step on some toes. I'm going to step on my own. Painfully.
God is LOVE. God demands LOVE from us.
We have to be careful. Sin is sin. "Their" sin is no different than yours and mine. WE are ALL sinful people. When I look in the mirror, it is a sinful reflection looking back at me.
No amount of righteousness changes that.
I'm still a sinner: only saved by the blood of Jesus Christ.
My sin still stinks. I am not spotless. I reek.
We too easily (myself WAY up on that list!) get caught up in being high-and-mighty when we proclaim right from wrong.
I will be honest. I'm struggling. I'm struggling with finding the balance of talking/teaching/encouraging to abstain from sin, living Biblical principles WITH accepting that we are sinners and treating others with love and acceptance. I believe that we absolutely HAVE to stand up for morals and what the Bible says is right and wrong. ABSOLUTELY believe in that! Anyone that knows me, KNOWS that. Yet, we also are responsible for loving.
Yet, there is the other part. The ugly part. The part that we wrongly think we are better than someone else because we aren't participating in the sin that they are.
We don't EVER drink and we honestly struggle with those around us that do. Yet, it's a personal choice that people make based on their own convictions and understanding of scripture. We don't watch, read, participate in certain activities and set high standards for what we allow our focus to be drawn to. Our standards are different. We search the Bible for answers and earnestly seek God's will. He places a convicting spirit within us and we know that "something" isn't for us. It's subjective in nature. We can argue all day about what is right/wrong on those standards, where grace comes in, etc...
In the end. WE are ALL still sinners.
Some sins are easily defined. Others aren't. We are living in a world that can't even see black and white on issues that the Bible plainly states as wrong.
Guess what? Even those that fall in the black and white category are just as sinful as the person that looks back at me in the mirror.
Why, didn't I eat "there" yesterday when I so obviously believe in their founding principles?
*I didn't feel worthy.
*I'm stepping in my own sin with every step I take.
*I'm confused with what my role in this world is.
*I don't know where to draw the line between encouraging "gospel living" and loving people exactly where they are at this moment.
I know this post seems very out of character for me. People probably expected my facebook page to be all about the controversy that is swirling out of control. After all, I'm very vocal about so many things in regards to spiritually protecting our children and families. This issue makes me concerned about what freedoms will be attacked next and what that means for our family.
Yet, to be honest. I'm stunned. I'm stunned that *it* is even such an issue.
But I sat at home. In stunned silence. I know what I believe in, I know WHY I believe it, I BELIEVE the Bible. Yet, I'm confused.
I don't know how to balance what I believe in with LOVE and RESPECT for others. We are to LOVE our enemies. We are to LOVE those that persecute us. I LOVE my children even when they do wrong. Yet, do I offer that same love to others when they do wrong? Do I offer myself that same love when I fall short?
Yet, we are to HATE sin. We are to FLEE from it.
I just don't know how to do it and how to balance it.
There you go. That is why I didn't eat there. There is a glimpse into the confusion in my own heart/head. Here is a very poorly written/expressed post because I can't even make sense of it all in my own head.