What’s happened to the meaning of words in our world? Things we once called evil are now called good. Some things we called good are now called evil. The “woke” world has silenced or quieted some speakers because they use words that are not approved.
Even so-called church leaders proclaim behavior that was once condemned as now being approved. Many are confused and wonder if there are any right or wrong choices today.
Let’s talk about sin. Do you remember that word? The Bible clearly describes our failures to live up to God’s standards as “sin.” The word in ancient texts comes from the description of an arrow that missed its target. Sin is to fail to hit the target. What is happening today is that the target is being moved!
The foundation for meaning and understanding has become a description of our feelings rather than facts, logic, or reason. Truth is no longer clearly defined. People speak of “my truth” and “your truth” as though there was no clear definition.
It is time to fight back against the shifting culture in which we live. If you have ever experienced quicksand, you will know that if you don’t struggle or find something to which you can anchor yourself, you will eventually sink below the surface.
Here are some “anchors” for standing firm:
(1) Determine the source of truth.
When Governor Pilate asked, “What is truth?” The Gospel records the affirmation of Jesus: “I am the way, the truth, and the life.” From the earliest days of this nation, the Bible and the Constitution have been the trusted documents that have guided the formation of our republic. Find the foundation or truth in documents that are tested and reliable. We need to reaffirm the permanent values in our world and not sacrifice them on the altar of the immediate. The disciples asked Jesus, “To whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life.” Better to build on the eternal rather than the fleeting.
(2) Depend on the spiritual rather than the material.
Some years ago I was leading a personal growth group with several business leaders in attendance. When we began discussing the values in which we believed, one of the men professed to hold to a higher standard than most of the group. In the course of our discussion, several of his friends challenged his claim. I replied, “Bill if you don’t live it, you don’t believe it.” Near the end of our ten weeks together, Bill brought me beautiful soapstone in which he had carved those words: If you don’t live it, then you don’t believe it. It became a life-changing moment, not only for Bill but for several members of the group. I cherish that rock and what it represents in the life of a friend. The faith which we embody becomes the spiritual foundation for many of our actions. We must live that faith convincingly.
(3) Trust the logical and reasonable rather than the emotional and fleeting.
Too many have failed to challenge the “woke” philosophers and speakers. We have allowed an expression of feelings to determine our behavior. The truth of thinking through the logical and reasonable consequences of decisions will guide us to a more solid foundation for both our thinking and our behavior. To think is to become! Or as the wisdom of the ancients reminds us, “As a man thinks, so is he.”
Your life and mine can be driven by opinions like the winds billowing in our sails. We need foundations that anchor our behavior. We discover assurance in a shifting culture to have our minds founded on rock-solid truth. Our validity is found in the truth that will set us free!