The Path

Is there ever a time when compromising your honor might be acceptable?  A time when the thought that your focus, your personal “rules,” might be less important than public perception?  Or, the perception of your friends and family.

When you find yourself in times of turmoil and trouble, do you seek a listening ear?  Do you have a mentor that is willing to provide you sound advice?  Many do not.

This misadventure of many, denoting that all police should be killed, hurt, or otherwise held to account for the perceived actions of a few, might be a situation where your values are tested.

Sometimes we err by failing to speak up.  We use silence as tacit acceptance for things we otherwise would not think to endorse.  In doing so, we break down our own sustained morals for the sake of peer pressure.  That’s right, I wrote “peer pressure.”  Exactly the actions we pray our children will not succumb.  Yet, in times of personal strife, we, most times, take the easy road.

Then, there are those that do not have a choice.  Those who are incarcerated are ‘told’ what to say, what to do, how to act; and, when provided mental health counseling laced with a variety of drugs, how to speak, and write, to those they love.

The consequences of actions undertaken at the advice of these purportedly well-meaning professionals may be good, or bad, when the dynamics of the family are not a known element.  Regardless, people need assistance and will look for it in their best friend, whose third divorce is pending; their co-worker out on bail for the fourth drug rehab escape; or, their family.  Sometimes the very people they once professed they needed to stay away from in order to have a less controlling life.

So, let’s look at where we are headed by our choices.

After hearing a brief discussion, I contemplated the position voiced that; If there were no ‘organizations’ (e.g., NRA, MADD, PTA, etc.), people might just spend more time with their families.  That if there were no internet, IPOD’s and related video games, there would be more communication.  If we then extend that to the ‘sports religion,’ there might even be some real parenting going on.

In fairness, AA and their related acronyms do provide a place for many of those in need to find their answers. And, one step in the process would bring the offender back to seek apologies from those offended.  Even if they do not want it.  Many do not get the point that the apology is as much for the person making it as the one receiving.

How do we then teach our children about developing their own set of rules?  Not compromising.  Not succumbing to the easy way out of their situation?

Sometimes it comes from standing your own ground.  No matter what people say about you.  No matter what people believe.  Our children learn for good, or bad by our example.  When the truth comes, it comes  in little snippets.  That is why the old adage “A lie travels round the world while the truth is still putting on its shoes,” remains so true.  People are more apt to believe the lie before the truth is even considered.  Then, when the truth is found, or the liar exposed, those offenders find another reason to disparage.

There are many who choose to strengthen their resolve when faced with adversity.  They bind themselves to reinforce their resolve to remain true to certain beliefs and principles they feel have been abandoned by their loved ones. They follow the rules more rigidly.  They even divorce themselves from those that gave them that very resolve.

One man I know went to prison after a trial, which he lost.  Then, an appeal, which he also lost.  Yet his resolve not to take a plea deal was based upon absolute innocence.  They came after he and his wife.  They both decided not to take any deal because “God” would set them free.  He is serving a 30 year sentence and his wife served 10 years. Their children came to prison often to support that choice.

Another, was asked by his wife to plead guilty so that she would not face prosecution.  He served 10 years.  To this day, his children continue not to speak with him, even as they acknowledge he did not commit the crimes of which he had been accused – but rather by third parties.

My wife, once asked me why I have to keep all my promises to others when they fail to keep theirs to me?  That is what it means to have a personal honor code.  That is what it means to sacrifice for others.  That is what permits a man to give up his life, in whole or part, when those he loves are in danger.

But you, O Sovereign LORD, deal well with me for your name’s sake; out of the goodness of your love, deliver me (Psalm 109:21

If you do not have a moral compass then the passage shared will have no meaning.  But, if you do understand the grace and simplicity of trusting in the Lord, then know this:

Be not a sole judge, for there is no sole judge but God, the One” (Mishnah). It was understood that only God was capable of judging without counsel.
The conviction of Jesus was illegal inasmuch as it was based on His own confession (Mark 14:61-64). The guilty verdict was based exclusively on the testimony of Jesus. Jesus was queried with a direct question as to whether He was the Christ. It would have been to His benefit if He remained silent, and He had the right to do such. But silence at this time would have been essentially a disavowal of His identity, duty, and burden.

That being said, a warning.  One day you may be called to support that which is unlawful, immoral, and/or designed to remove your convictions of faith.  You may even be asked to lay down your life for those you love.  What will you do?

The next time there is rioting in the streets.  The next time there is a call for the killing of police, fire, or other public officials; have your commitment to morals engraved on your soul.  Understand, police were once called “Peace Officers.”  For many, the newer term of “law enforcement,” although apropos, may do more harm than good.  Regardless of how you identify yourself, let it be in righteousness.

To those who have received poor advice, drug induced attempts to reconcile, or, simply having misstated yourself in time of contention; remain true to yourself in all you do going forward.  Trust that the Lord will restore all that was lost.  He WILL strengthen your resolve.  And you WILL find peace in His assurance of the right.

Love Never FailsMy wife today has known me for more than 35 years. Even while parted, she knew the truth.  She knows the depth of my personal commitment to God and to the principles I have retained throughout.  She was given to me as a part of that restoration.  I thank God daily for her.  You see; I have finally found the person I am so crazy in love with, who is so crazy in love with me.

We are now taking that journey of personal commitment together.
I pray you will each find the means to live in honor, your professed morals.