Letters To My Younger Self; Don’t Compromise.
Galatians 2:20 (ESV)
20 I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.
Dear younger self; you were a d**k.
(A friend said this about herself but it totally applies to me too.)
James 4:17 (KJV)
17 Therefore to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin.
The best and sometimes worst thing that happens when you become a Christian is that God takes you on a journey of cleansing. (if you are willing to open yourself up to Him.) In my own personal journey of cleansing, I have asked God to show me negative things about myself. I also ask God to show me anything that I can not see that is a huge issue in my life and God never disappoints. (Sometimes that other being tries to come in with my own issues but he comes with negativity not positivity.)
Back to the topic at hand, a few nights ago a thought came into my head about something that happened 13-14 years ago, this was at the start of high school. God showed me that even at the start of –what I consider to be the beginning of- my days of compromise I was truly horrendous, I was mean, nasty and very very self-centered. I would go into what happened but it would be unfair on who my terrible behaviour was aimed at so I will just get to my behaviour and not what actually happened.
My response at the time to the outcome of mine and other people’s behaviour was to really distance myself from the matter at hand instead of owning my behaviour and apologising sincerely for it.
What stood out to me about the whole scenario was that I was so quick to distance myself from the matter to the point of saying “I have done this but not that.” How brazen, that even in the face of someone breaking down because of spoken and unspoken words I desperately wanted to be separate from those terrible people who had made this person cry, when I was one of them, when my actions were probably far worse because I did nothing to help the person long before we got to this point.
That’s when it hit me that my compromising, trying to fit in happened so quickly to the point of my actions hurting someone else. Which was something that I despised and stood against when I was not trying to fit in.
I was a compromiser long before I thought I was one.
This memory coming back to me at this point in my life was so important because it made me remember who I was and it tied into who I became and what I went through as life went on. I do believe that I was being tested at the time and I failed the tests horribly. This memory put my life into persepctive because it showed me how desperate I was to try and fit in. I spent so long trying to fit into social groups and be liked to the point of compromising on my morals and all the things that I thought made me a good person. It also showed me that I am focusing on the hurts that others put me through whilst simultaneously forgetting what I put others through.
I wrote this in an “upcoming” post about not being ashamed of your story…
Everyone has their own secrets and pasts and if someone is willing to use yours against you there will be something that will be used against them, they will have someone waiting to use their past against them.
These words are so true, I have been caught up in my own “they hurt me’s” that I have forgotten that I hurt people too. My actions towards others probably hurt people more than anyone’s actions towards me did. I don’t know what the consequences of my behaviour truly did to people and their futures. What I went through is nothing because God gave me a second chance at life, I don’t know if people I hurt also got second chances at their own lives.
I turned this series to letters to young women who are like me when I was younger. So what would I say to young women out there who are struggling with compromise.
Once you open the door to compromise you will find it hard to close it again on your own.
Look at your life and I mean look deeply at yourself. Look to see if you have compromised on any morals that you used to or still have but maybe you are blind to your behaviour. If you have compromised on anything, take the time out to really ask God to show you your actions because that’s the first step to putting things right. You can’t physically right the wrongs of the past when people are no longer around you for you to apologise or make visible changes.
If you still have the opportunity to apologise to someone for something you did whilst compromising. It will be so much better for the both of you. You don’t want to bump into guilt in the future and you certainly don’t want someone else living with emotional turmoil thanks to you actions. Make things right whilst the pain is still in its infancy.
If you’ve compromised in other areas of your life, keep your eyes peeled for posts about that. But make a start by searching yourself to see what’s been going on in your life. The first step towards a change in behaviour starts with knowing what is good and what is not within yourself.
You can’t pour from an empty cup.