Sonny Scott, a writer from Mississippi, really hit a cord with this article published in the Daily Journal. While he specifically addresses the issue of home schoolers from a cultural perspective, between the lines, he discloses a huge issue between those actively seeking answers in the Word of God and attempting to live their lives by it and those who are not. The issue is simply this. We don’t like people who are doing what we know we should (or could) be doing.
Their very existence represents a rejection of our values, and an indictment of our lifestyles. Those families are willing to render unto Caesar the things that Caesar’s be, but they draw the line at their children. Those of us who have put our trust in the secular state (and effectively surrendered our children to it) recognize this act of defiance as a rejection of our values, and we reject them in return.
It is frustrating to us when we see the good fruit produced in families around us who are embracing and applying the Word of God to their lives and we realize there are no cheap or easy ways to reproduce that fruit in our family. More specifically we realize that we will have to sacrifice some of our “me time” and give of ourselves as a servant to actually make this happen.
It is far easier to criticize the one who God uses to bring the conviction (shoot the messenger) than it is to humbly re-visit what the Word of God says about the issue and be willing to die to our self… even more.
Just as the jealous Chaldeans schemed to bring the wrath of the king upon the Hebrew eunuchs, we are happy to sic the state’s bureaucrats on these “trouble makers.” Their implicit rejection of America’s most venerated idol, Materialism, (a.k.a. “Individualism”) spurs us to heat the furnace and feed the lions.
The down side of the article is Mr. Scott tends to paint the home schoolers as perfect in their obedience and training, which of course will never be true this side of heaven. But, I suppose in comparison to the purple haired, tattooed, pierced skin, baggy pants wearing, individualistic, self centered, only child of our modern culture a family with a few decently behaved children will always stand out in a crowd.
While the article specifically addresses the issue of home schooling, the principle applies to any area that may need reform in our lives. When someone believes something to be true, by their action of rejecting or embracing it, they are setting a standard which will cause everyone who knows of their decision to consider their own practices. This is true for their theology, entertainment choices, where they live, how they dress, how they worship, their family size, the purchases they make, and pretty much any decision they make.
When they make a decision for their family it is a representation of who they are and what they believe. When that decision is out of sync with our culture then they stand out. The question we need to ask ourselves, is not why are they standing out in a culture that despises the Word of God, but why do we blend in.
How can we be a light to the world, if we are shrouded in the same darkness?
(Gen 1:4) And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness.
(Isa 5:20) Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!
(Isa 50:10) Who is among you that feareth the LORD, that obeyeth the voice of his servant, that walketh in darkness, and hath no light? let him trust in the name of the LORD, and stay upon his God.
(Joh 1:5) And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not.
(Joh 3:19) And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.
(Joh 12:46) I am come a light into the world, that whosoever believeth on me should not abide in darkness.
(Act 26:18) To open their eyes, and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins, and inheritance among them which are sanctified by faith that is in me.
(2Co 6:14) Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness?
(Eph 5:8) For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light:
(1Th 5:5) Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness.
(1Pe 2:9) But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should show forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvelous light:
(1Jn 1:5) This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.