It’s nearing the end of a snowy day in Schenectady and as everyone is busy rushing home from work, with thoughts of bills to pay and children to help with homework… no one notices her on the curb. She has been crying and her tears, like tiny pearls, are frozen dots embedded in her scarf. The hand-me-down coat she wears no longer closes, not because she has grown but due to her current condition. She sits in silence, trying to quiet the echoes of sadness, regret and fears that are overwhelming her. Today was especially difficult because she could not seem to shake the awful words that some of the kids were saying about her. There she is in plain sight, yet no one notices her. No one..can see her pain. She’s 15..and she’s pregnant.
This is not an article about teen pregnancy, though it is a topic that plagues us. It is not about poverty, bullying, nor is it about emotional or mental breakdown. Those topics would be too obvious. This article is about compromise. How so?
Growing up in Miami, Fl. in the 70’s I can recall how quickly “progress” became the focal point for the culture back then. Build more housing, bring in more businesses…grow, grow, grow. Sadly enough, with that “progress” came compromise. What had begun as a noble attempt at accomodating people (giving them more), in the end was in fact what gave way to the demise of “family” values. Give the people what they want and what they want..is “more!” The culture that was created as a result led my generation away from God, and into the arms of compromise, an insatiable addiction. Compromise occurs when our desire to obtain something outweighs what we will have to give up and/or the consequences that will result, in order to obtain it. In the case of this young lady, she was not thinking of the consequence of giving herself away. She was willing. Aren’t we all…willing? Don’t we compromise who we are, and what we believe in, just to _______? You fill in the blank.
At the end of the day, aren’t we all that young girl, sitting by the road as if life was just passing us by, hiding our pain, in plain sight of the world yet no one really sees us, bullied or ridiculed because of our choices, not fitting into our clothes (the roles we should be playing), filled with apprehension for the future knowing that the compromises we’ve made will draw us into a life we would not have chosen for ourselves had we not given in?
How do we reverse the effects of compromise? Can we? Perhaps the only place to begin..is at the root of the culture itself. It all began because we wanted more. We lost our ability to know when more is dangerous..or hazardous. Or maybe we just became desensitized by the thrill..
Mark 8:37 Is anything worth more than your soul?