All of us have experienced peer pressure at some point in our lives. We want to fit in and be a part of the group so we go along to get along. Now even as I write this I know that some of you and maybe many of you are strong-willed and balk at me saying we’ve all done it. If you haven’t ever given into peer pressure good for you. But for the rest of us it’s hard at times in our lives when everyone else is doing something to stand by our principles. It becomes easier when we become an adult to stand alone, but in the teen years it’s difficult because the peers are so important.
In grade school it may be a popular group we want to be in so we do what the group does to be accepted. In the junior high and high school years, it may involve trying alcohol or drugs or smoking a cigarette or marijuana. As an adult, when everyone is speeding over the limit and passing you by, do you hold to the speed limit and move over to the slow lane? It takes will power to hold to our principles when it seems that everyone is going in the opposite direction.
I was reading in the bible about an individual who was pressured to go with the crowd. His name was Micaiah and he was a prophet. The backdrop of the story had the King of Israel wanting the king of Judah to go to battle with him. The king of Judah wanted to seek the Lord before going to battle to see what He wanted. “So the king of Israel brought together the prophets—four hundred men—and asked them, “Shall we go to war against Ramoth Gilead, or shall I not?” “Go,” they answered, “for God will give it into the king’s hand.” II Chronicles 18:5
The response of the 400 prophets of Israel didn’t satisfy the king of Judah so he wanted one who would prophesy in the name of the Lord. There was only one prophet in the country who did that and his name was Micaiah. They sent for him and this is what they said to him. All the other prophets were prophesying the same thing. “Attack Ramoth Gilead and be victorious,” they said, “for the LORD will give it into the king’s hand.” The messenger who had gone to summon Micaiah said to him, “Look, the other prophets without exception are predicting success for the king. Let your word agree with theirs, and speak favorably.” 2 Chronicles 18: 11-12 NIV
As you read the rest of the story, Micaiah initially did what the other 400 prophets wanted him to do–say the same thing they had said. But when the king of Judah challenged him to speak in the name of the Lord, he spoke from the Lord and told them that if they went they would be defeated.
Speaking up and saying the right thing knowing you are going against the crowd is difficult because you will stand alone when you do it. Do you want to be known for being in the crowd or doing and saying the right thing even if you have to go it alone.
On this journey, there will be times when you are called to be the lone voice speaking the truth to others. It will be at times seem lonely, but know that God will never leave nor forsake those who follow Him fully.