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I gave a short quiz in my Values Class.
We discussed in our previous lesson about the students’ role in the community and how they can be responsible citizens.
Part of the quiz is a short reflection with an instruction like this:
In one column write at least six positive habits and six negative habits on the other. Circle the top two negative ones that you hope to eliminate before you complete this course of study. This section is worth 20 points.
The students started writing their answer. Interestingly, they wrote positive habits in the first column such as reviewing the lesson before coming to class, sleeping on time, eating healthy food, and exercising regularly.
When they were done, they started working with six negative habits.
Joe (pseudonym) one of my Grade 11 students wrote the word “cheating” as one of the negative habits he wish to eliminate. Out of curiosity, I approached him and asked.
“Joe, I am just wondering why did you write this?” I asked.
“Mr. Jun, I’m cheating because most of my classmates are cheating,” he said candidly.
“Would that be unfair with others who have studied hard?” I replied.
“Well, as long as you’re not being caught Mr. Jun, it’s alright,” he insisted.
Our ability to discern or choose to do the right thing is oftentimes weaken when we are surrounded by ungodly people. Needless to say, it seems acceptable to do the wrong thing when everyone is doing it. Our actions are usually determined by the norms we lived in.
However, we have to stand for what is right so we will not sink. Martin Luther once said that a ship belongs in the sea, but when the sea gets into the ship, it is doomed to sink. While we are in this world, we are in danger of losing our purpose when the mindset of worldly cultures replaces the noble Christian character.
Is the Bible silent about this issue?
Take for instance the story of Samson in the Bible. Because he associated himself with a wrong woman he was able to compromise his mission. Remember, bad company corrupts good character (1 Corinthians 15:33).
But take a look at Joseph’s life as he was tempted by Potiphar’s wife (Genesis 39). He managed to stand out and chose to do what is pleasing in God’s sight even he was in a foreign land. When you dare to stand up for what is right, the Heaven is always on your side.
Most of the time we are reluctant to do what is right because we are afraid that we might be isolated or branded as old-fashioned. Remember, the true test of character is measured by reflecting Christ’s character even when no one sees you. This reminder may be basic yet very essential for us to grow spiritually.
May God bless you!