Should we change who we are for someone else? To be like everyone else? To adapt to our ever changing culture?
I already know MY answer: No.
The truth is, it’s both very challenging and tempting to want to fit in and to be part of the cookie cutter phenomenon.
It’s tough to stand alone.
It’s lonely waving your little white flag way over in the corner. It’s quiet when you are off to the side of the crowd. It makes you question if it is worth it. Does it matter to hold true to being you, to holding tight to your principles, to keeping your word, to remaining cemented to your vows?
VOWS. Ouch! Now THERE’S a word for the ages. A vow is a solemn promise. There are NO ifs, ands, or buts attached to it. By actual definition it means: “An oath, pledge, promise, bond, covenant, commitment, avowal, profession, affirmation, attestation, assurance, guarantee.” It basically means “my word is a sure thing”. If I said it, I meant it. It won’t change or waver. It may be challenged and even threatened, and possibly mocked – BUT it remains. Period. Done deal. Unmovable.
In a world that is lost and insecure and confused, I think it’s possibly our only hope – to hold true to the truths of our ancestors , to those who came before us and made the paths for us to walk down. The truths of faith, love, courage, perseverance, faithfulness, loyalty, morality, goodness, character, integrity, and trust. In the great words of the Declaration of Independence- “We hold these truths to be self evident…” Truth is truth even if you say it’s a lie. Truth stands on its own merit.
There is a personal (good) ‘power trip’ in NOT being able to be swayed to change or to go along with the crowd, or to do what you really don’t want to do, or believe what you really don’t believe . Put on your shades and find the thrill that comes from standing alone.
When I was in high school in the 70’s (when dinosaurs roamed the earth as my grandkids think), I was what was referred to as a ‘Jesus Freak’. I didn’t go along with the crowd and do what everyone else was doing. They all thought they were cool, but ME? I KNEW I was cool! (Insert grandkids laughter) You know why? I felt such a rush of power in knowing I stood alone and could not be moved. That was just how it felt to me. Go along with the crowd? Nope. I’ll just be over here with my Bible and my ‘One Way Jesus’ button. I had peace in my heart that the world couldn’t give and the world couldn’t take it away.
Standing alone is its own kind of cool.
Always make sure what you stand for has stood the test of time. Don’t stand on thin ice that quickly cracks and melts away. Culture changes every decade or so; fads come and go and come again; everything old will be new again someday; and everything that the world tells you is cool should be questioned intensely. Stand on solid ground that has layers of rocks beneath it that can NEVER be moved. This is a safety for your soul and a safe place to build your life upon.
Through the years, I have been asked often, “Are you still a Jesus Freak?”
“Why, yes! Yes I am!” And the response is usually, “Wow!”