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Wednesday, April 21, 2010

first steps

I had a ‘set-to’ with Keva the other day. She (and her mom, too, I think maybe) was put out with me for a couple days. The topic of dancing came up. I was raised to know that was sin, but I never gave it any in depth thought until I was well into my adult years and raising my own kids. Then I began to think that activity and many others through to discover for myself why I had been taught so stringently that they were sins.

In today’s world, many things that the old saints called sin are commonly accepted by modern “Christians.” Those of us who adhere to the ‘old-fashioned’ teachings are castigated as old fashioned and judgemental and legalistic. I’m sure that is what Keva thought of me.

So here is my thought process.

When we consider many modern forms of entertainment, there appears to be nothing wrong with them on the face of things. I mean, really, what is wrong with dancing? How is it any different from running or hopping or skipping or playing ball? Many Christians believe it is okay drink alcohol, always qualifying it with the phrase ‘if it’s not done to excess’ but really an occasional “buzz” is all right—as long as it isn’t a regular habit. (Oh yeah, lots of qualifications there.) Radio, television, movies, make-up, stylish clothing… the list goes on and on. What exactly is wrong with any of them?

In thinking through the question of dancing, I think I’ve found the answer to the sin in all of those things. Keva, in very belittling and withering tones, said, “Oh, so Seth is sinning every day!” (Seth prances around all by himself all over the house in his own style of ‘dance.’ He doesn't even need music. LOL He makes his own. ) And I answered, “No, he’s doing it at home all by himself. He can move however he feels like. He’s not going out in a mixed group and gyrating in front of them.”

And therein lies much of the problem. The movements of modern dances are quite frankly seductive and suggestive. They involve placing one’s body in positions and actions that were intended by the Creator to evoke a sexual response in one’s husband or wife. They involve pressing the body against a member of the opposite sex in a way that God ordained be reserved exclusively for one’s mate. It is the beginning of an adulterous affair or simple fornication in far, far too many cases.
(To make my point... My husband would have been justifyably incensed to find me in such a position with another man... Only a foolish man or woman would not find the positioning provocative)

The other side of the equation involves the locations where men and women go to dance. Oh yes, I know, modern Christians point to ‘innoncent’ high-school mixers and parties. And those may well be chaperoned and wholesome, but the next step leads to other circumstances. Once the child has learned to dance and enjoy the ‘innocent’ titillation involved in their high-school activities, they want to continue enjoying the activity and feelings. Probably 90% of the possible locations for dancing young adults and their older counterparts can find, most frequent are bars and a variety of clubs. Here there is an atmosphere promoting drinking, drugs, flirting with other members of the opposite sex and the opportunity to dance with them, fostering, even promoting, chances for illicit liaisons. It cannot even be legitimized, spiritually, by the excuse, ‘well, I’m not married” because free sexual relations outside of marriage are just as much sin as those within.

See, the difficulty in dancing is not in the physical activity, but in what it leads to ultimately. Sometime during my life I was told by a wise saint, “Once you set your foot on Satan’s road, you forfeit control over where he will take you and how far you will go.” And sadly, I’ve seen that proven over and over… Seemingly innocent activities, innocent occupations, innocent words may well be innocuous as far as the world is concerned, but they are the first step on Satan’s path.

“A little wine for the stomach’s sake” is used to promote the acceptance of alcohol consumption. (If Paul had dreamed of the long reaching and evil effects his beneficent medical advice would have provoked he would have bitten his tongue off.) In spite of all the excuses given regarding the 'benefits' of alcohol on the system, the greatest still remains that it loosens the inhibitions and relaxes the individual causing them to feel good and leading to the commission of acts that the sober person would never dream of doing. And so society laughs at drunks who dance on coffee tables, perform impromptu strip-teases, or go swimming in their clothes—or better yet in their skin.

Adults smoke tobacco even with all the proven medical consequences and manage to make it look so sophisticated that thousands of young people are still taking up the habit that leads to addiction and life threatening consequences.

Instead of providing consistent and loving discipline, we give our children drugs to control their behavior, never considering the life-long predilection to drug abuse we are fostering.

We allow our children to watch movies and tv programs that promote ungodly dress and behavior. We allow them to listen to music rousing deep sensations in immature psyches and encouraging movements that are sexually provocative.

We buy cute, revealing outfits for our little girls and never consider the modesty issues that must be molded in to the young girl in order that they might be maintained when the body matures.

And society says all these things are O.K.

How very wise are the parents who by example teach how to live and the places it is best to go. How wise are the parents who limit their child’s entertainments and choices of friends and the frequency of their association with them. How wise are the parents who limit their child’s choices of music and television programming. How wise are the parents who restrict their child from burrowing himself away in a bedroom to pursue long hours of internet activity and music ‘appreciation.’

God, in His wisdom, planned that parents teach and limit and control their children for many years that the course of the child’s life might be nurtured and shaped into godliness.. Especially since while back when some president’s foolish wife popped up with the slogan, “It takes a village to raise a child” American parents have been abdicating their responsibility for shaping and nurturing their children. They are allowing the mores of society to control their children and they are fostering a false independence in the youngsters when they do not have the knowledge or experience to be independent.

So the sin of dancing and a long list of other things, does not lie specifically in the action (although sometimes it may) but in the eventuality of those first steps. I wish parents would step back and really LOOK at where the ‘innocent’ activities they are permitting and too often actually encouraging their children are going to take them.

1 comment:

  1. Vondi,
    That was very well written about how sin can come upon us in seemingly innocent, yet worldly ways of living that we have.
    This is a very strict Godly way of bringing children up, and it takes a lot of strength for parents to be able to raise their children this way without them running away from home, but I think if it starts very early in the childs life, it makes it possible to do this. It also helps to be living out in the country too. The city makes it rough. Those kids have it rough. They are forced into gangs, or be killed as in shot. I feel sorry for them.

    The dancing is usually suggestive, and you are very right about the alcohol too. It is taken to get rid of the inhibitions, and it does too. The smoking, well, back in my days it was to look grown up and cool, but now, it looks sad as it is regarded as a weakness, something the kid can't kick, and the smell and the breath and stinky hair, and it is no longer cool. So many people quit, and find smokers offensive to have around.
    Anyway, you sound like you were raised right, and sure do know how to raise Godly children. I wish that I was raised in a Christian home. While I loved my parents, they were not Godly.