The Protective Power of Conformity

I shouldn’t write any of this. My mother reads my blog. This could be dangerous, but I think it’s important, too.

New Years…Not a shining moment in my life. A dear friend of mine invited me to spend New Years with him and his friends. Well, the evening got “festive.” Embarrassingly “festive.” And yes, I woke up with my very first hangover. For the record, I quickly discovered that despite the momentary fun of it all, it was sooo not worth it.

I decided not to beat myself up over it. It was stupid, but those things can happen. Besides, I never do that. So it is, if not excusable, understandable. I spoke with my friend on Sunday about the whole evening. He was saddened by the fact that a group of brothers and sisters would get together and give into drunkenness. His spirit was grieved by the whole night. At the sound of those words, mine was too. “You guys were not living by the Spirit.” And he is right. There are no excuses.

Heavens, I fail to live by the Spirit every day. Of course I am not intoxicated every day. But I can be condescending, self-absorbed and easily discouraged. These are my acoholism. They are not as obvious as drunkenness…Well, maybe they are just common symptoms of our humanity, therefore overlooked on a daily basis by people who have been infected by them, as well. Nevertheless, they are there. Would my friend be as disappointed if he looked more closely at the everyday happenings my life? Oh, the curse of imperfection.

As I listened to him talk about his frustrations, I fought the urge to justify myself. “Hey, I have been going through a lot lately. I needed to not care. I needed to not hold on to tightly. You know that’s not me.”

You know that’s not me. What if that really was me? I have never been a drinker because I am usually not around other drinkers. The few times I have indulged, I was in the company of people who do the same. Maybe the reason I have never been a drinker is that I am far to worried about living up the the social expectation placed on me by my peer group.

I truly believe that the friends I have chosen were really placed in my life by God as a hedge around my life. I know that God has protected me despite myself many times. It is frightening to think of how I would be if I were left entirely to my own devices. I am not trying to go all Lord of the Flies, but there is something to be said about conformity. To the right ends, it serves as protection.

What would my life look like if the hidden parts of my heart were given vehicle to express themselves fully? How evil am I? This is a question to which I will never know the answer. I am not left to my own devices, praise God. These truths beg the question “Does the way I live offer protection to those around me?”

I’m sorry Mom.

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One Response to The Protective Power of Conformity

  1. Amy says:

    Thank you for your vulnerability Cheryl. An example to follow.–>

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