April 24, 2014

Purity Isn't Popular (Episode 1)



Purity.

In today’s society, it’s seen a childish. Old-fashioned.

I’ve discovered that even in the “Christian bubble,” a person won’t escape mockery for a commitment to being pure. One day, I was in a small group of four fellow Christian believers—ranging in age from about 30 to 50.

They were discussing a popular book called “Fifty Shades of Grey” and a new movie, “Magic Mike.” To give you some background in case you’ve never heard of these:

“Fifty Shades of Grey” by E.L. James. This book is described as an "erotic romance novel."

“Magic Mike” (2012). This movie is rated R. A summary of this movie says, "A male stripper teaches a younger performer how to party, pick up women, and make easy money."

You can imagine my shock when I heard them widely approving of both. Then, when I commented that I didn’t intend to watch/read them because I didn’t think the content appropriate, these fellow Christ-followers mocked me. “Oh, Laurel, you’re so sheltered.” They rolled their eyes and laughed. “It’s no big deal. This kind of stuff is fun to watch and read. And besides, there’s plenty of worse stuff out there.”

Not one of the four other adults in the room with me agreed with my position—and each one was older than me and had been following Jesus for longer than I had. They continued to ridicule me for being young and naïve. I was very upset.

“Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity.” - 1 Timothy 4:12

Purity seems to have been reduced something optional in the modern idea of Christianity. And that’s upsetting.

But do you know what I realized? I was guilty, too.

I “rationalized” the things I was watching, reading, and hearing … thinking they “weren’t that bad” compared to other stuff. God convicted my heart and kept bringing to mind the Bible passage below. I knew I needed to change.

“Follow God’s example, therefore, as dearly loved children and walk in the way of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God. But among you there must not be even a hint of sexual immorality, or of any kind of impurity, or of greed, because these are improper for God’s holy people. Nor should there be obscenity, foolish talk or coarse joking, which are out of place, but rather thanksgiving.” - Ephesians 5:1-4

“Not even a hint…” I wanted radical purity like that.

There were two things I knew:
1. That this was going to be a hard road.
2. That I wanted to walk it because I deeply desire to please my Savior.

So, I made a rather drastic change. I’ll tell you about it in my next blog post.

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