How much am I willing to compromise? This is a question I’m thinking about today, and maybe sharing my struggles will help someone else ask themselves the same question.
There are decisions I’m trying to make for my family and with this blog, and I need the Lord to provide the right judgment. I realize, that these choices involve who will have most influence over the raising of my children and over the focus of the work I do here. Do I trust the school systems to provide for the educational needs of my children? Do I continue going to the church we’ve been visiting, thereby exposing them to teachings that I disagree with during their Sunday school lesson? Do I tone things down on KindlingTruth, denying some hard issues that I’ve been convicted of in the past and nearly turned aside from?
These question might seem simple for many. For me, questions about my ability to do things right get in the way.
Can I manage homeschooling two kids, raising a newborn, and maintaining my work-at-home job? Maybe it would be better for the kids to go to public school for a couple more years. Meanwhile, based on the experiences we had last school year, I know what they are subject to. Especially my oldest who’s on the autism spectrum. I won’t get into details, but traditional school does not work for him. Am I really willing to make that compromise?
Can I be the Christian influence my children need? I want them to be around other believing adults because I feel like I fall short of the example I want to be. They need some Christian men and kids to be around too, right? Meanwhile, I suspect the day will come when we are faced with a choice. Do we join this church or not? How can we join a church that teaches doctrines I don’t believe in? Will I be required to accept these teachings in order to join, as is customary for most churches? Even if I’m not strictly required, will we be ostracized? Pursuing righteousness through relationship with Jesus and the Holy Spirit is about all we have in common–and since these teachings are hard to find today–I’ve stuck around. But, should I? Should I compromise?
What about KindlingTruth? It’s good to learn how to prioritize things, like which doctrines matter most and what areas I should be focusing on. However, I also realize that there are some influences that have caused me to make compromises. I’ve begun, at least in part, to compromise on hard truths. As with other decisions, this is because I question myself and I begin to look to others who seem to know better. Even people who can mostly be trusted, as far as mankind goes, have had their part in causing me to question what the Lord as taught me by causing me to second guess myself. Maybe it’s just my poor understanding and poor judgment, I reasoned. It wasn’t. I was looking to others when I should be looking to Jesus.
I realize now, that I’ve been ignoring something. I’ve been ignoring the fact that I’m supposed to be looking to Jesus and Jesus alone. Yes, we are a body and we need each other, and I don’t forsake that at all. However, for the purposes of raising my children and performing this ministry, there can be no other “head” for me to look to.
I am faulty and full of self-doubt. One of the things I ask the Lord about is, why me? Why give me children to raise in a time like this, knowing the struggles I’ve had being a parent? Why do I have to do a ministry that is ignored, trying to make hard truths known when I am a weak person who is not very skillful? There are others who can do better, right? Then there’s the accusations that go along with it, like living under the shadow of my bible teacher and acting as a copycat, or worse yet, being called an instrument of Satan.
I think I’m okay with doubting myself now though, because I am continually reminded that it’s not my goodness or skill that matters. What matters is what the Lord is doing, and I am His servant. He will do the work — but there can be no compromises.
I cannot allow the children that God blessed me with the be raised by the government or corrupt religious systems. That’s my job, and the Lord will help me do it. We will learn to look to Jesus alone, and although the world might find us foolish and I cannot pursue financial prosperity as much as I could otherwise, we will have what matters most. We will have the wisdom of God and the prosperity of His everlasting kingdom. I cannot allow my self-doubt to cause me to bury my talent in the earth or look to anyone other than Jesus for guidance or approval in ministry. The world might find the work strange and even devilish, but the Christian world is well on its way to becoming the Great Whore, and I’m ready to get out of it.
It’s so easy to make compromises with this world. We don’t think we have what it takes, we question our better judgment for favor of what the majority thinks is best, or we have trouble letting go of worldly pleasures and prosperity. We should not be willing to make any compromises. Although there is a time and place for setting good priorities, like deeming What Matters Most when dealing with issues of the faith, there is a fine-line balance we should strive for. We need better wisdom and judgment. We need strength to do what is right once the way is made known to us. No matter the cost, don’t sacrifice Jesus. He is all we have in the end. There is no compromise.