Thursday, April 30, 2009

Misery Loves Company

But the wicked are like the troubled sea, when it cannot rest, whose waters cast up mire and dirt.
There is no peace, saith my God, to the wicked.
Isaiah 57:20 &21
It can be so hard to watch people that we have cared about turn away from any sense of biblical lifestyle. A biblical lifestyle they once declared as the only way for them to live. These same people who cried 'christian'
(and continue to do so) but choose to walk in the world's ways instead.
True, that is hard to watch anyone from church family walk away. However, it is even harder to see them pulling others with them. This has happened before, and it will happen again. Those among our church family who lack a solid trust in God's soveriegnty in their life become discontented waiting on Him - and then share that discontent, looking for sympathizers who will join in on the misery.
Apparently that is happening among our young adults right now. A young woman who left our church once she became married is communicating with another young woman who is still with us. The discussion has turned to how a lack of education and lack of career has left the married girl unhappy.
You see, the majority of families in our church are homeschoolers and 'higher' education is not encouraged. It isn't taboo, either - but not encouraged. The majority of families also encourage young women toward being stay-at-home wives and mothers. So this married woman is now blaming our church's influence on her education and career choices as the reason for her misery.
The first problem with this story is that this young woman was from a family that did not homeschool. She is a public high school graduate, therefore had all the influence of that arena to head to college - but chose not to go.
The second problem with this story is that this young woman was a good example of a church suck-up: someone who jumps on the bandwagon to be part of the crowd. She was part of the youth group for years and took part in all types of ministry. She proclaimed convictions on several lifestyle issues - just like her friends of the time proclaimed. However, when the time came to trust in God's promises and live out those convictions, her true colours came out. There were no real convictions at all.
The third problem with this story, and the biggest problem, is that this young woman, for as long as I knew her (8 years), has never been content with her life. She was always looking for the next thing to make her happy. Because she was single, she wasn't happy - so she married. Unfortunately, she married a man who has little to no interest in the Lord. However, she HAD to be married to be happy.
When the marriage didn't make her happy, she HAD to have a baby. Now that the baby is here and she's not happy, it's because she doesn't have an education and career.
This young woman is an example of the 'children, tossed to and fro' (Ephesians 4:14) of someone who is 'ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth' (1 Timothy 3:7). Now she wants to have the sympathizers to join her in her misery.
All that can be done for the young woman who still has a relationship with Mrs. Misery, is to remind of God's warnings:
And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness but rather reprove them. Ephesians 5:11
This friendship would be short lived if the young woman who remains in church were to begin changing the subject away from misery. If she were to express the blessings she experiences in her life by living out her convictions each time a trial comes; if she were to reprove the 'unfruitful' conversation when it arises - Mrs. Misery would stop communicating with her.
That is hard to do for a young woman - for anyone. It is hard to set yourself up to be hurt by someone who calls themselves a friend. I pray for her, I pray for her parents wisdom in guiding her and I pray for the situation as a whole. And, then I have to practice what I preach and leave it up to God.
Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us.
Ephesians 3:20

1 comment:

Mrs. Parunak said...

This is really convicting. I know you know how strongly I feel about women being home, rejecting feminism, etc., but so often when women want to complain to me about how their children tie them down, or depress them, or bore them, or whatever, reproof is the furthest thing from my mind. I can't even say that it's occurred to me, and yet there it is, plain as plain, right there in Scripture. I'm going to have to really think about this.