April 27, 2014

Purity Isn’t Popular (Episode 2)


I’m used to being ridiculed a bit for my “purity” standards.

I’ve also found that it’s not uncommon in completely Christian circles to be mocked—in subtle and not-so-subtle ways.

And I made a decision that I knew people would find strange. And probably make me the recipient of even more comments like, “You’re too easily offended, Laurel.”

But I just had to do it. (See why in my previous post.)

After realizing I was guilty of claiming to want to be pure, but not being careful about what I watched on television, saw in movies, or listened to through music … I made some big changes. I’m really thankful that even though it seems a bit “extreme,” Dave is super supportive.

DISCLAIMER: I want to be clear that the following list is a result of how God is convicting me. This is by NO MEANS meant to be a slap of judgment on anyone who does these things. I just want to share this with you in the hopes to encourage every Christ-follower to be intentional about living lives of purity before God.

Changes in my life:

1. I listen exclusively to Christian and classical radio stations now. (Okay, and occasionally sports radio stations with Dave, who is big into hockey!)  :)  
Although I like a variety of music (country, pop, rock, etc.), I don’t want to hear the “bad” along with the “good” songs I actually enjoy. I was deeply convicted by Ephesians 5:1-4. I don’t want to expose myself to even a hint of sexual immorality, impurity, greed, obscenity, foolish talk, or coarse joking. And to avoid those things, I realized I would need to limit myself to Christian and classical radio.

2. I stopped watching a bunch of TV shows I liked.
I was a fan of Downton Abbey, The Big Bang Theory, Sherlock Holmes, The I.T. Crowd, White Collar, and a lot of others. Even though some of these are “relatively clean” compared to a lot of other stuff out there, I knew that in order to live according to Ephesians 5, I’d have to stop justifying my watching these shows … and just give them up. For good.

3. I’m watching more G and PG movies.
My rule of thumb now for movies (and TV shows, for that matter) is that it has to be either “neutral” or “good.” You know what I found out rather quickly? It’s actually really hard to find movies that fall into either of these categories if you measure the content against scripture. Bottom line? I’m watching a lot more G and PG movies. An acceptable PG-13 movie is rare.

I know, I know. Maybe you’re thinking, “Wow, a lot of that stuff isn't really that bad. You’re taking this too far.” But I keep going back to Ephesians 5. “Not a hint…”

What I’ve realized is that you have to say “no” to some things to say “yes” to something that is more important. And that more important thing is purity … holiness … living my life in a way that honors God.

And no, this is not an “experiment.” It’s not something I’m “trying out for a year.” It’s a lifestyle change. I know not everyone will understand/support this particular decision. And that’s okay. My hope is that this post serves as an encouragement to you if you’ve been feeling the pull in your heart to radical purity, too. Be encouraged: you’re not alone!

Read an update about how things are going in Purity Isn't Popular (Episode 3).

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