Once a month we plan to address a “Mail Bag” issue. If you have an idea or question you would like to be considered for the “Mail Bag” post, please send it to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
The following is an excerpt of a note found in my e-mail box a few weeks ago:
I wrote back to this person, but my response was returned as “undeliverable”, so I am going to address it here.
There are probably as many different personal convictions about various issues as there are Christians in the world. Let’s look at a sampling of examples:
• You can’t wear pantyhose.
• You can wear pantyhose…but not fish net style. Especially black. White is OK though.
• You can wear pantyhose as long as they don’t show.
• You can’t wear pants.
• You can wear pants if you are under 5 years old.
• You can wear pants if they are pink.
• You can’t wear earrings.
• You can wear earrings as long as they are clip ons…but no pierced ears.
• You can’t watch movies.
• You can watch movies if they have the gospel message explained.
• You can’t listen to Christian music with a drum beat.
• You can listen to Christian music with a drum beat as long as it is very slow. How slow? You know. Slow.
• You can’t have Disney princesses in your house.
• You can have Disney princesses in your house as long as you don’t watch movies about said princesses.
We could go on ad nauseum with this exercise and have such fun. We could also get into some topics that are a lot more personal to each one of us. And if I did mention them, some of you would write lovely comments, and others of you would unsubscribe to this blog and maybe send me an angry letter.
On that note, I might add that it is amusing to see the subscriber readership go up or down based on a single post. “Oh, I adore this…I agree with it 100%! I absolutely must subscribe!” Or….”This post is garbage! Suddenly this whole blog reeks like sour grapes, and I shall unsubscribe immediately!”
We Wemmicks are pretty fickle folk.
On this blog, we want to be careful to encourage obedience to God’s Word where the instructions are explicit. Where God’s Word teaches principles, such as the principle of keeping our homes in such a way that they glorify God, there is some wiggle room for people who are all on a different leg of their Christian life.
Some of our writers might feel that purging their homes of all Christian Pop music is important. Some might be Country Western fans. Some might ditch all things Disney. Some might not have any problem using a Disney DVD to babysit their children on a bad day.
The writer of the blog post, mentioned in the letter above, has personal convictions about Disney princesses. Why? Perhaps she found her own heart led astray as a child through playing with those types of things, and she feels convicted by the Holy Spirit to get rid of them. Maybe she was noticing some negative fruit in the heart of one of her children. We are not told why, nor do we need to know all the ins and outs of her conviction in that area. That’s her business, and I respect that.
She does state: “We recently went through our entire home, discarding items that did not glorify the LORD.” And then goes on to list a few examples…the offending princesses among others. Even though the Bible doesn’t specifically address Disney, Country Western music, and drinking soda pop (among a million other things), we must still make discerning judgement calls on whether or not those things are bringing glory to Christ or detracting from His glory in our own lives. Where does the discernment come from? Our own Wemmick feelings and opinions? Or the resultant thinking that comes from a life and heart saturated daily in God’s Word?
And then, back to the point of the article: sometimes we will want to do some “purging” of things that may cause us or our children to stumble. She then shares a personal example of how she has recently done that for her own family. She never once states that others must throw away Disney princesses.
We’ve become very adroit at crying, “LEGALIST ALERT!” every time we run across someone with convictions more stringent than our own. Remedy? Understand what legalism is…and isn’t. I recommend this blog article HERE. Under an accurate, Biblical definition of legalism, for the Disney Princess Dumper to be accurately pinned with the label of “legalist”, she would have to be telling others to dump THEIR Disney princesses too, lest they burn in hell.
God’s Word teaches us to be generous in our dealings with one another and not impose our own convictions about things that are not found in His Word…on others. And that slices both ways. If you feel someone is struggling with legalism (putting their personal convictions on others and claiming that those convictions are the difference between salvation and the lack thereof), then, by all means, pray for those poor Pharisaical souls.
But you don’t want to become a legalist by your own faulty definition, and put your personal convictions to embrace all those darling Disney princesses–on others. And why throw out friends when they disagree on minor points of interest?
Someone recently purchased the eBook, The Heart of Simplicity, and disagreed on one point made in one chapter that took up a few brief sentences. The book is almost 300 pages long, but because she wanted every single thing to be exactly as she saw it…she reacted negatively and even asked for a refund.
We Wemmicks have the expectation that just because we believe something or are convicted about something, that everyone else must fall into line with us. This tendency is precisely why we need the plumb line of God’s Word for every area of life. What we think is totally irrelevant. What our Maker thinks—well that’s another story.
My thought is that a mother should be free to throw away Disney princesses…and talk about it on the internet…without raising the ire of other Christians who happen to like Disney princesses. There are FAR more important issues rooted very explicitly in God’s Word that are being dismissed and glossed over today by Christians, (how about fornication, sodomy, and the murder of babies just for starters), while we mess around arguing about make-believe royalty.
I certainly hope minor disagreements like this will not hinder anyone from experiencing the benefit of the information and encouragement found on Visionary Womanhood as well as other worthwhile blogs. I don’t always agree with every single post on some of my favorite blogs. So? We are ALL simple Wemmicks…and need to extend grace to one another, understanding that God is doing His sanctifying work in each heart, in His own timing.