"The standards are high because the stakes are high" - this truth told by Pastor Joe Bonifacio resonated to me the most at the last Teachers' Summit.
And almost immediately, the picture of me drinking alcohol 2 years ago came to mind.
(NO PHOTOS TO SHOW HERE)
SO, I DRINK (USED TO)
Yes guys, before I became a full time staff, I drink. I actually enjoy it more because it's an activity shared with friends over stories and jokes and I am a friends-person. (Is there such a term? lol! But you get what I mean, you're a person who goes out of her way just to spend time with her friends!)
I have been toying with the idea of abstaining from it completely but the decision came full circle when I became a full time staff. I decided to finally say yes to it because the idea of causing the people I am discipling and most especially the kids that I teach to stumble is enough to make me cringe.
And just to say that this is not a post that condemns people who drink, not at all. I am talking about my personal conviction -- the area that God called me to obey Him at this season in my life.
It was what God was calling me to do so I did it.
SO MUCH MORE AT STAKE
So that was the higher standard, because so much more is at stake than drinking a bottle of two of alcohol and I am not willing to compromise the gospel for a momentary enjoyment.
Many times in the Bible, God told His followers to be set apart. It means that as followers of Christ, we are held at a different standard -- not as people better than everyone else because we are all created equal in God's eyes -- but because Jesus told us to be set apart, just as He is to be set apart in our lives as holy.
I imagine that when He told his followers to set Him apart, that we are looking at a plane wherein all the people are -- then millions of feet above that plane, is Jesus. He is totally on a league of His own. So our regard to Him should be 10000000000x revering, respectful and loving. Our regard toward Him should be infinitely MORE compared to anything that the world offers.
So in the same way that He is set apart in our lives, we are also called to be set apart from the world, and the question really isn't whether "is this a sin or not?" but "what is God calling me to do? And what is at stake here?"
So it's not, what is the maximum thing I can get away with, but what would be the thing that I need to do or what should I stop doing that will please and bring honor to God?
It may sound hard and most times it is, but when we focus our eyes on the cross, really what God is calling us to do is so much more easier and small compared what He has already done. It's grace that got us this far and it is grace that will help us finish the race strong.
So I pray that you would continue to seek Him and ask yourself: what is God calling me to do at this season in my life? :)