by Steve Countryman
5/11/2012 / Christian Living
Acceptance is what everyone looks for. In school it was being accepted by the "popular crowd". Looking for approval! Approval from your parents, friends, family, coworkers, schoolmates and from your church. Seeking approval and acceptance for your good and bad decisions. When you accept something means that to some degree you have given your approval. It is like taking a stand, either you approve or you disapprove but no "fence riding". The world calls it diversity. Acceptance of differences in each other can be okay as long as those differences are not differences of choice! For example, by accepting and approving someone whose lifestyle is based on them going from one drug high to another, acceptance can be a destructive approval! You then become an enabler. Like giving someone sympathy instead of giving someone help.
As a Christian you are to love the sinner but hate their sin. Example, you are a Christian parent and your son is coming to stay for a week's visit. He is bringing his live-in girlfriend along to meet you. They plan on staying in his old bedroom together. What do you do? This is your home and you are responsible for what happens in your home regardless of the age of your son! If you give in or approve, ( acceptance ), you compromise your belief and faith for the sake of your child's feelings. By doing so your child now has your "blessings" on his sinful lifestyle. You then become an enabler not someone who cares about your child's character, belief system and his eternal well being! By saying no you let your child know that you will not tolerate their sinfulness in your home. Saying no doesn't mean that you don't love him or that you love him any less, on the contrary it means that you love him so much that you can't approve of a lifestyle that is sinful. By saying no means that you don't approve of his decision to live with someone outside of marriage. By saying no it also means that you disapprove of the way he treats his girlfriend like a whore instead of respecting her and her body. It is called tough love!
Christians are called to be holy, separate from the world or "set apart" and we are to live our lives that way. You can't expect God to bless your home and your life if you are not willing to live your life for Him. It should be obvious to everyone that you are a Christian by the way you live and what you tolerate in your daily life and in your home. We Christians are constantly watched by the world for our ability to make God fearing decisions and stick to them because of our faith. Acceptance, approval, diversity and tolerance can all be forms of compromise. How high of a price are you willing to pay for compromise? Often you lose more than you gain just to get someone's approval. The approval you should seek is that of the Father. Does your life speak of one who is set apart from the world or does the world see you as one of its own?
Acceptance can also include accepting circumstances that should not be accepted. If you have an illness or a disease, you can choose to accept it or not to accept it! By accepting it you give in to all that it will do to harm you. You give it power and control! By denying acceptance you deny all that it wants to do to harm you. You strip the power from it making it weaker. By denying it you now are fighting it. You have a disease the disease does not have you. As a Christian you have something that non-Christians don't have, God! You don't have to fight it alone. You have God's promises. You have God's available healing! You have God's available power! You have God's will for your life to be sickness and disease free! You are His temple where sickness and disease is not allowed. In the Old Testament anytime you read about the temple of the Lord you read that anyone who was sick or diseased was not allowed in His temple. That temple represents you and your body. Sickness and disease has to stay out! We are His temple and disease and sickness is not allowed in the temple of the Lord, PERIOD! Likewise the only way that you can be defeated as a child of the Most High God is if you allow Satan to defeat you! Sickness and disease entered this world through sin. They did not exist prior to Adam and Eve sinning.
Where acceptance is nice to receive from others what really counts is the acceptance you receive from the Father! His acceptance of you and your obedience to Him! A true Christina is someone who is sold out for Christ. Your willingness and obedience to God and His kingdom! Are you ready?!?
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