This is going to be a controversial post. (Ooh, I can just feel the traffic coming to my blog- Bwaa Haa Haaaaa!) No, I’m going to unveil the spiritual content now, give my little illustration, then get back into the application. It’s different than most of my posts, so my readership will have to get out of the routine. This won’t be too earth-shattering, since it’s like, one person! I’m going to talk about how the Holy Spirit has the power to convict us of things and how we respond- even when it’s an unpopular thing to do or when it’s one of those, “Well, I guess it’s not ALL bad, but not ALL good,” kinds of things. You know, the percieved gray areas?
OK, burning a CD without paying for it is against the law. I’m not talking about you bought an album on iTunes so you make a CD copy for yourself. I’m talking about, “Hey, so-and-so has the new Flibberty Giblets CD… I’m so going to burn that.” It seems like no one, youth or adult agrees with me that this is stealing. I didn’t think so either for a long time. I had literally hundreds of burned jazz, classical, blues, rock, bluegrass and other CDs in my collection. It wasn’t until I came across a forum for youth pastors where I first felt a little tug from the Holy Spirit telling me that burning CDs that I didn’t own and then calling them mine was… wrong. If you don’t like it, then imagine what I was feeling at the time! I, the youth pastor, had even burned a few Christian artists’ CDs. I got rid of them, either through the trash or by deleting them from my iTunes. It stunk at first, but then I realized I had done the right thing. That was about three years ago. I just did the same thing this week when I realized I’d let myself get complacent with it again.
So, it begs some of the following questions: What is conviction? What about things that are commonly accepted in the world around us? How do I respond to conviction? It is a tough thing to deal with.
I’m reminded of 1 Corinthians 8, where Paul was addressing the food sacrificed to idols. It, since the idols weren’t real, was just food. But there were some people that could get spiritually tripped up by this and sin. So, he tells us, that if we partake of it, we could cause them to sin. I think of my conviction by the Holy Spirit (whom Jesus calls “Counselor” in John 14:26) as a way of letting me see that there are things that I need to avoid. Maybe it’s to abstain from an appearance of wrongdoing. Maybe it’s to let me see that I can trust in Him through trials- and dumping a lot of great music is a trial for me! I don’t totally understand this topic, but have to be willing to let the Counselor counsel.
What are some ways that you have been under conviction and had to respond?
Until next time!