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  • pastorjimduncan

Lowering Standards

The older I become, the more I look at myself and say, “I’m becoming an old fogey!” I NEVER wanted to be that way! But, when I think of what I’m “fogeyish” about, it isn’t, “Those young people need to do this or that!” What makes me a “fogey” are some of the very destructive and unhealthy trends of today. We are lowering standards that aren’t just “The way it used to be,” but we are stopping practices that help maintain basic health and standards of decency. Let me give you an example.

For just a few months in the early 1980’s, maybe three at the most, I managed a little restaurant called, “Spanky’s Clubhouse and Delicatessen,” in what used to be JB Whites in the old Greenville Mall. It sat where Cabela’s is now. There were health and cleanliness rules which were enforced by DEHEC that, if we violated, could shut us down.

Now, I’ve NEVER been a supporter of government bureaucracy and agencies, but much of what they were enforcing was just common sense; such as food containers could not be stored on the floor, food placed on a table could not be reused, and hair nets must be worn over hair on face and head. Our restaurant actually forbid facial hair because our owner felt there was too much of a chance of beard hair getting in food.

So, last week we decided to order out from a favorite restaurant in Powdersville. When I went to pick up the food, there was a young man with hair past his shoulders making pizza crust. Understand: I am NOT against long hair on men at all! If my hair wasn’t thinning, I’d wear mine much longer! But this guy’s hair was hanging all around his face and shoulders and slinging around as he worked the pizza dough. And, he kept wiping his face! NASTY! Later in the week We stopped by a drive through to get a biscuit, and there was another young man standing at the biscuit table, drinking a soda, and wearing a hoodie! Oh, and his pants were WELL BELOW HIS WAIST! These are the people who are making your food!

Now, on a side note, things have ALWAYS gone on in restaurants that weren’t exactly sanitary. Stuff happens! But there were standards of health that were and still are, for our protection. Food born illnesses are a very real thing. So why are these standards being ignored? I looked it up on DEHEC’s website, and the rules regarding hairnets are still on the books. There is also a rule stating if an employee who prepares food touches exposed skin, he/she is to immediately go wash their hands and arms. The guy working with the pizza dough needed a bath!

So, what’s happening? Am I really just an “Old fogey,” or have we just lowered our standards? Maybe both are true, but our standards have definitely been lowered.

Today, it is becoming harder and harder to find people who will work. Employers are doing everything they can to keep whom they’ve hired. That includes overlooking certain things if it means they don’t have to call people in or hire someone else. Employees are well aware of that fact, so many are taking advantage of the situation. “Make me wear a hairnet and I’ll quit! Make me do anything I find slightly annoying and I’ll quit!”

Many people look at their relationship with God in the same way. “Biblical Christianity has too many demands,” they say, “so I’ll go with what works for me. God accepts me just as I am! There is no need for me to change! Take the beam out of your own eye before you judge me, mister!” However, God has always had standards and just as He does not change, neither do they!

For example, Jesus said, “I Am the Way, the Truth, and the Life. No man comes to the Father, except by Me.” That is the standard. Most everyone who calls themselves a Christian accepts that. Jesus also said, “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter into the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.” Not everyone who calls themselves a Christian accepts that standard, however, as evidenced by the behavior of so many “Christians.”

Scripture says in I Corinthians 6:9,10; “Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God!” (NKJV) Still, so many “Christians” practice living together, support homosexuality – usually because a family member professes to be gay – and coveting is so rampant that many Christians are overextended on more than one credit card. I hear that quite often.

It seems much of Christianity today has left the STANDARDS of Lordship, for the STATEMENT of Lordship. “Listen to what I am saying, not what I am doing.” Lowering standards in society creates a weaker society. Lowering the standards of Christianity is just disobedience. God never honors that.

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