By Steve Mutua.
Ephesians 5:11-12: “Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but rather expose them. It is shameful even to mention what the disobedient do in secret.”
Cowardice is just as evil as active perpetration of evil. Spiritual cowardice not only leads to betrayal of the best, of God, but to as active and potent evil as the more obvious aggressive acting out of cruel, self-serving, dishonest malice.
It is important to be fully aware of this, to liberate yourself from the illusion that your weakness, your cowardliness, are really not so harmful, and perhaps are even more spiritual than the fighting spirit of those who risk themselves and their personal advantages by aggressive goodness and positive assertion.
What happens when you are weak, when you do not stand up to evil behavior, when you collude with it and refrain from fighting for the truth? You encourage evil, you sustain the illusion in the person who perpetrates it that it is not so bad, that it is all right, that it is smart and that many people support it.
This perpetuates the further illusion that by asserting truth, standing up for decency, and exposing evil, you will be isolated, ridiculed, and rejected. In other words, you foster the delusion that in order to be accepted one needs to sell out integrity and decency.
All this happens constantly in human interaction. Such encouragement of evil is easy to push out of full awareness. Yet around the person who indulges in this kind of negative behavior there is a cloud of guilt, confusion, and an emotional climate of self-rejection.
No matter how you try to talk yourself out of self-hate and into self-esteem on theoretical grounds, you will not succeed until you have gained the spiritual courage to be willing to sacrifice acceptance from others—if indeed you believe that this price has to be paid.