It never ceases to amaze and disturb me when I encounter a situation where the window of opportunity for edification and illumination is unequivocally and soundly blocked by the darkest of curtains. In these instances, when it may seem appropriate to make a stand and speak out, I find myself in silent contemplation and prayer until my feet carry me out of the vicinity of the hypocrisy.
One recent situation had me grieved to the point of rendering me silent and absent until someone noticed that one of their own was missing for a time. However, during that time of solitude I found I was simultaneously restless and peaceful. Restless because I felt I was the odd person out when I did not participate in the uncomfortable setting, but peaceful because I felt I was quietly living up to my convictions instead of dancing with the soiree.
I have asked myself sometimes if I am somewhat of a nitpicker. Although millions of Christians do, I don’t download music and movies over the Internet. Why not? Because, according to the laws of the land, it is illegal. So if I choose to physically withdraw from activities and discussions I feel are unwholesome, unedifying and possibly even detrimental to the group, I don’t understand why I subsequently feel ostracized when I choose to take a quiet stance for when I feel is the right thing to do.
It does sadden me, though, when I find I am sometimes inconsistent with my convictions. It is almost as if I am shining my light in a dark stable, where, from a distance, the light may only shine through an occasional crack between the planks. I think it’s safe (and frightening) to say that we have all, sometimes, shone our light under broken cups, occasionally lifting it up to see if the candle really is flickering under there, instead of being a consistent glow in the open.
So, if I make the occasional stand for what I feel is the right thing to do, please do not treat me any differently, or get frustrated when you ask if there is anything wrong with me and I do not immediately answer. Because, sometimes, the answer is something you may not want to hear.