On Being A Counter-Cultural Mom

My mom was a counter-cultural mom.

When everyone else was watching certain movies and listening to certain music, my mom said no. When disrespect was flying out of the mouth of teenagers everywhere, mom expected respect to our elders, including her. We didn’t call boys. We didn’t dress provocatively. She expected us to be in church on Sunday, whether our heart felt worship-ful or not. Some days I thought she was the strictest mom I knew, but now I know that she was actually a God-fearing mom, and I’m so thankful.

mom

Today, as mothers, we have to make similar choices. Often, being a follower of Jesus Christ means saying “no”, not only to the outright wrong, but to questionable activities that the world views as normal. And this can lead to being labeled: legalistic, over protective, old-fashioned.

I’ll be honest, there are stands in the Bible that I don’t completely understand, and sometimes I don’t know exactly where to draw lines when it comes to application and practice.

This is where I have to walk by faith.

When God says “no” to something and calls it sin, I have to agree, whether I understand completely or not. When God says that I can’t be like the world and we can’t embrace the values, norms, or philosophy of the world, I have to trust God to lead me through the grey areas. I have to use the best information I have at the time and follow Him without apology.

Moms, when you have to make hard, unpopular decisions, and you are swimming upstream, don’t waver. And when you see other Christians and blogs and articles telling you that your “verboden” area is nothing to worry about and why your kids should do XYZ, pray, ask God about it, then do the right thing.

This world is full of rationalizing and line walking. And it has infiltrated the church under the guise of enlightenment and moderation.

But, dear mom, you answer to God and not the latest blog. Rely on Him.

In order to stay the course, we have to remember that we are called out to be a people unto God. Separate. Not isolationists, but consecrated to God’s Work as the “temple of the Holy Spirit.” There can be no mixing of darkness and light.

It means I can’t sin in order to get a chance to witness to someone, and I can’t compromise or engage in worldliness to somehow affect the people around me.

We are to be “salt and light” according to Jesus. Light shines in dark places, and salt preserves and flavors. Faithfulness right where you are is what will make the difference. 

I’m studying the quiet faithfulness of women of the Old Testament and how God used them to accomplish His will. Most had mundane lives, living in obscurity, with little to no rights, but what made them great is their faith that led to brave, counter cultural acts of obedience. Shiphrah and Puah, the midwives, are two examples of counter-cultural, God-fearing women. They refused to comply with the king of Egypt’s order to kill all the Hebrew baby boys as they were being born. Exodus 1:21 tells us they defied the king “because the midwives feared God” more than they feared the King. Their refusal to sin preserved the fledgling nation of Israel. Talk about being part of God’s story.

And this has to be true of us today, right where we are, in our little homes or out and about living our everyday lives, raising families for God’s glory. We have to live with our eyes and hearts toward God, and we must fear and respect Him enough to boldly live out our faith when it’s counter cultural and unwanted by society. It’s okay to be different. In fact, we have to teach our kids that this world is not our home. We are truly strangers and pilgrims on our way to a Better City.

So, if you have to say no to the worthless, so you can pursue and ingrain the eternal, do it.

When you are the only mom saying no to that movie, or that activity, or that music, or that type of dress, or that questionable situation, or that type of screen time, because you don’t believe it will help your child’s spiritual growth, stay strong. Keep your eyes on heaven. Remember Christ. This world is not all there is. This is only a moment. Eternity is forever. Rely on Christ and be faithful.

4 comments

  1. Karen Todd says:

    Amen Sarah!!! Thank you for being one of those faithful, God-fearing women. I am standing with you!

  2. Yes, yes! My heart exactly. God is calling us to homeschooling when no-one else is doing it. It’s been almost twenty years since there has been a homeschooling family in our church. At first, this filled me with fear – the fear of being different. But then, I remembered I am different on so many levels anyway! Lol. Also, my husband and I had to make some hard, against-the-grain decisions for our son and God has just given me so much confidence – in Him. Thank you, I love this.

    • Sarah Beals says:

      Sarah, homeschooling has been so much work but such a blessing in our lives. I wish you well on your journey. Feel free to email me if you have any questions…I’ve been at it for too many years to count and have graduated 3 so far. :) God bless you.