While getting ready to do our devotions last night, my husband jokingly accused me of being legalistic. We were talking about listening to music while reading your bible, and I told him I was adamantly against it.
I’m definitely more a person of rules and guidelines. I’d be the one to argue that a game is more fun with rules, a life is more successful with principles and society safer with law.
Before you get offended because you listen to music while reading your bible, hear me out. When we discussed it, I divulged that I already have a hard enough time hearing the Lord speak and focusing on reading the Word, to add music as a distraction. As a matter of principle, I read my bible without music so that the Lord can speak clearly to me through what I am reading.
Andrew wasn’t serious in saying I was legalistic, but I knew he had a point. We started talking about the “rules” we live by, and the individual guidelines we each hold.
As we analyzed them we determined that they were simply principles, not legalism.
I believe that the world today is lacking men and women who will stand up and say that they will be people of principle.
If you want to build a strong foundation for your life, you need to decide what principles you hold on to.
For example, to build a strong foundation for our marriage we have some principles that we hold very close to our hearts. Some people wouldn’t agree with them, but they are guidelines that we hold to strengthen our foundation. One principle that we have is that my husband would not go for coffee or drive alone with another woman, and I wouldn’t do that with another man. This strengthens the trust in our marriage knowing the following things;
a. We avoid situations that look bad. (1 Thessalonians 5:22)
b. We are purposefully flee situations that could possibly be tempting. (2 Timothy 2:22)
c. We are reiterating to each other that all other relationships are second to the building up of our marriage. Some marriage vows say “forsaking all others”. (Genesis 2:24)
A statement that I turn over in my mind endlessly is this “if you are guided by principle, you won’t be swayed by circumstance.”
When you have solid principles in place, you have a solid foundation. You need a solid foundation to withstand the storms of life.
When a circumstance comes along that you are unsure about, you won’t need to live in a state of self-doubt because you will examine your principles and see how this situation lines up.
For me personally, by guarding my bible reading time as a “music free zone”, I am proving to the Lord that hearing his voice is paramount in my life.
It’s a principle for me. Maybe not for you. Perhaps you need music to focus. But it’s a safeguard in my life that I will not compromise.
Do you have principles that you hold on to that are very personal to your individual self?