When People I Admired Give Up Their Convictions

Has that ever happened to you? Did you ever admire someone greatly, perhaps follow their blog in order to receive encouragement and support, and then — wham! — you find out they have ditched their convictions and are now doing something different? No explanation or apology. It feels like being betrayed. Abandoned.

Now, I understand that people sometimes change their mind. I do that, too! Sometimes I think I’m right about something, and then I think about it a lot and decide to go in a different direction. That happens, and that’s okay. At least, it’s okay when it makes sense, right? When the decision is based on logic and biblical reasoning. I also think it helps to try to explain things to people who might be affected by my decision, so that they will not feel bewildered.

For example: I used to send my two oldest children (back in the day when I was a much younger mother) to a local charter school. It was a small, Montessori/traditional blend, and I felt comfortable with it. At that time, I also felt a lack of confidence in my ability to homeschool, even though that is what I had really hoped to do. By the time my oldest had been going to this same charter school for almost four years, my husband and I decided to homeschool. Yes, we changed our minds. But, there was solid reasoning behind it, and we did it after a lot of thinking. The longer I’ve homeschooled, the stronger my conviction has become that it is what’s best for our children. There are so many reasons for this, but that’s not what this post is about. The point is, I changed my mind, and I believe it was for the best.

Let’s talk about wearing skirts and dresses only. I’ve been living this lifestyle for six years (since February of 2012). When I first started, I was motivated by the changes some people I knew were making toward a full skirts-and-dresses-only life. Let me clarify that I DID NOT start to wear skirts and dresses just because they were! I am not a people follower! However, it was something I hadn’t considered since I was eleven or twelve, and these people gave me the opportunity to reconsider it in a fresh light. There were a couple of major reasons for making this wardrobe change, the first being modesty, and the second being a more distinguished femininity. Pants can be sort of modest — if they are loose enough, and if the behind and thighs are covered with a long shirt. But, skirts and dresses can be more so, if long, flowy, and not see-through. Additionally, skirts and dresses cover up the crotch area — big deal! Men may be somewhat desensitized to crotches, behinds, and thighs since they see them all the time — but, men are still men! Even in our degraded culture, perhaps especially in our degraded culture, it is still important for Christian women to dress modestly and cover up their private parts with more than a thin veneer of stretchy jean material! So, I started to dress differently for good reasons, which I had thought out very carefully.

However, it was very disappointing to see those people who had first inspired me ditch their beliefs, with no explanation at all or concern for how it might affect me. Even today, I still feel hurt, though I try to get over it and acknowledge that they have a right to change their minds, even if it doesn’t make any sense to me. I still can’t understand how they could change their minds after they had felt so strongly about wearing skirts and dresses, and especially after they had demonstrated a clear understanding of the need for modesty, based on the Bible’s teaching! Personally, I think they just got tired of being different. They got tired, so they gave up. But, where did that leave me? I don’t have any support from the ladies in our church, nor do I have any from my family, but I keep on going, because it is what I know to be right, and because I want to be (hopefully) a catalyst for much-needed change in our world. Why couldn’t they persevere? Why did they leave me hanging? We could have supported and encouraged each other, and now . . . I’m all alone. (Which makes me exceedingly grateful for all the wonderful support I have gotten and continue to get from my online friends! Thank you so much!)

Today, I felt that way again.

There was a blog I used to check up on every now and then for its helpful articles about organizing and decluttering, homeschooling a large family, and wearing skirts and dresses only. The original blog was later replaced by a new one. Both blogs have been deleted, and with them, all the great articles I had found so inspiring! I was so disappointed. Even if the author didn’t want to continue writing new articles, couldn’t she at least have left up the old ones, so people like me could continue to benefit from them? I had no idea what was going on, so I looked up her Facebook profile. Oh, no.

It looks like she is selling all her homeschool curriculum, and her daughters are now wearing pants! I guess they are going through some major life changes, and I presume she didn’t want people criticizing her and making things worse. Perhaps it was her husband who wanted the changes, and she is just doing her best to go along with what he wants, as a submissive wife. She, just like everybody else, is free to change her mind about things. However, here’s the thing: In her articles she had been SO committed to homeschooling and skirts and dresses only! She had very good reasons — with Bible verses to back them up — for their lifestyle. If her reasons were good, and she sincerely believed them to be true, then how could she abandon them? Not only has she confused me, but I’m sure she’s left a ton of other ladies scratching their heads, too. And not only that, they may be feeling abandoned and betrayed.

Now, let me set this straight. Everybody has to form their own convictions; we cannot depend upon others for a perfect example of how we should be living our lives. People are not perfect. Therefore, it is the Bible we should depend upon. However, may I please highlight that though we should not depend upon others for our convictions, neither does that let them “off the hook” for how their lives influence others! We can say, “So what, my choices are my choices, and it’s not my fault how it affects other people,” but that would not be love. The Bible tells us that we should care how our choices affect others! When making decisions, we need to not only consider ourselves, but also those whom our decisions could affect. And, even if after much consideration, we still choose to move forward with our new course of action, we at least owe our friends and blog followers some sort of explanation. It doesn’t need to be detailed; but, it should at least acknowledge those people and their faithful readership. It should at least treat those loyal blog followers with enough respect and dignity to honor them with a decent farewell and kindhearted invitation to keep up with them through another forum, if possible.

Perhaps this particular blog author did do that through one last blog post before she deleted her blogs, but I didn’t make it in time to see it. Now, she’s just one more person who has left me feeling disappointed and unsupported. Let’s not let that be us, ladies! I don’t want to be a negative person, please understand. But, can we please learn to stand in our convictions, no matter what happens in life? So much depends upon it! I think that Satan has had the chance to snicker and sneer and ridicule those who have given up, saying, “Look, I knew they wouldn’t last.” And he was right; they didn’t. True, they may not have given up their belief in the gospel, which is THE MOST important thing! But, they gave up on one or more aspects of living a holy, set-apart life, which will have consequences for not only their own family, but for other families and individuals who are watching them. Because, yes, people are watching us, observing us closely, and either hoping for the chance to prove we’re hypocrites, or hoping to be able to look up to us as a source of inspiration. Which are we going to be?

“Therefore let us pursue the things which make for peace and the things by which one may edify another. . . It is good neither to eat meat nor drink wine nor do anything by which your brother stumbles or is offended or is made weak. Do you have faith? Have it to yourself before God. Happy is he who does not condemn himself in what he approves. . . We then who are strong ought to bear with the scruples of the weak, and not to please ourselves. Let each of us please his neighbor for his good, leading to edification. For even Christ did not please Himself . . . “

Romans 14:19-15:3 [emphasis added]


*Note: Next week I am planning on continuing with the next chapter of Pivot of Civilization: “Children Troop Down from Heaven.” It should be interesting!

Comments

  1. SusanneT

    It doesn’t just disappoint me when women weaken their Biblical convictions it surprises me because in my experience the more we follow Christ the stronger the conviction on these issues becomes. Especially true in my experience through pregnancy and motherhood.

  2. Sanae.T

    Honesty and being true are so important in any kind of sharing,I think.As you say,people are watching us , how we christians act.

    I know those who denies bible doctorines often use our failures and dishonest attitudes as proof of how christianity is not worth accepting.

    Probably we should pray for christians who changed their minds and left.And you are right.We should not depend upon others.Sharing from other christians are blessing and encouragement,and we often need them.But faith is our personal relationship with God.Ultimately it is between one person and God.

    Thank you Jessica,for being there honestly.This article made me ponder about being honest and true in sharing.

  3. Regina Shea

    Jessica I’m glad your shared this. It makes me understand more why some ladies are disappointed that some of the married daughters of a certain reality family are now wearing pants.

    I admit I’m a little disappointed too but for these ladies their husbands were not raised with the same convictions as their family.
    I do wish though the daughters would give an explaination as to why they have abandoned their convictions of skirts and dresses only. I would have thought the producers from their show would have have them address the issue.
    Regarding the blog you used to follow, that is bizarre that she would make such an abrupt change without explaining why. You could probably politely ask and ask her how you can pray for her.

    My similar experience is the lady who explained to me about why she covered way back in 2004 no longer covers. She used to wear dresses and skirts only but she doesn’t do that either. I’m very disappointed because she was my inspiration and I totally admired women like her.
    Anyway, it’s very hard to see women leave their convictions and the best we can do is pray they work their way back.

  4. Rosemarie Matthews

    Hi Jessica! Thanks for the article.
    I have also followed three blogs in the past where the ladies expressed their convictions to wear modest skirts/dresses only then changed their convictions. So disheartening.
    Prior to finding your blog I prayed that the Lord would guide me to friends, even online friends, that would stand strong in their convictions of wearing skirts/dresses exclusively and head coverings during prayer as I feel very strongly about these issues. This is how I came across to meet you online! LOL

  5. Rosemarie Matthews

    Continuation of previous comment…
    Anyways I am happy that I found a friend who feels the same about compromising and changing convictions. Thanks for the scripture as well. It’s nice that you include God’s word in your posts.
    You are a talented writer. Have you ever thought of publishing mini devotionals for women? Just an idea 😊

  6. Diana J.

    I know the blog of which you speak, and yes, so disappointing! I followed her for years and learned so much from her. And yes, I do wish she had done a follow-up post. I’m pretty sure she didn’t, because I checked her second blog every couple of days until it went down last month, and never saw any final post. I will miss her writing!!

    I have also experienced what you said about feeling abandoned by someone with whom one shared convictions. For me, it was the same – a girl who shared a strong skirts-only conviction. Then, one day, she was back in pants and has never worn a skirt since. Not only is it deeply disappointing, but it’s also awkward and puts an awkward feeling with the friendship from there on out.

    Like-minded friends are such a blessing, in person or online. We’re trying to change the Christian culture, but it’s hard to do it alone! 🙂

  7. Regina Shea

    I agree with the ladies comments above. And I do try not to let it get to me when people, women in particular abandon Biblical commands.

  8. Ruth

    This has hapened to me too. Noumerous times.
    It was very hurtfull i can still feel sad about it if i dwell on it.
    I think God maybe allows this for the sake that we reflect on our convictions and why we are doing what we do.
    HE gave me a bible word to encourage my dissapointed Spirit: John 21, 21+22.
    Hope it helps you too.
    I have often WISHED to be able to be part of a church wich practices head covering and so on.
    Fact is where i live there is no such thing existing.
    BUT i feel that no matter what, if God clearly calls on my heart i better obey him. 🙂

  9. SusanneT

    Aside from anything else I don’t understand why anyone would turn away from such an easy conviction as that of wearing modest feminine clothing.

    Is it really so hard to wear a skirt ? I’ve worn only skirts and dresses for the last 14+ years and I don’t find it any problem.

    Whatever anyone says it is more modest (assuming a longer skirt) and it is a statement of God’s design for us as women which is different from that of men.

    Plus who’s husband doesn’t prefer a feminine wife ?

  10. Post
    Author
    Jessica Roldan

    Thank you SO MUCH, ladies, for all your wonderful comments on this post!

    I just re-read them all this morning, and I want to say how much I appreciate ALL of you! I am so glad we see things alike; it truly is an inspiration and an encouragement to me.

    And, I agree with all the things you mentioned. 🙂
    Jessica

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