Compromise (noun or verb) (1) An agreement made between two people or groups in which each side gives up some of the things they want so that both sides are happy at the end. (2) A settlement of differences by arbitration or by consent reached by mutual concessions
The following story came from a daily devotional that was sent to us. I do not know who the author of it is, but it is a great example of compromise.
A Russian parable tells of a hunter who once raised his rifle and took careful aim at a large bear. When the man was about to pull the trigger, the bear spoke in a soft, soothing voice. “Isn’t it better to talk than to shoot? What do you want? Let us negotiate the matter.” Lowering his rifle, the hunter replied, “I want a fur coat.”
“Good,” said the bear. “That is a negotiable question. I only want a full stomach, so let’s negotiate a compromise.” They sat down to negotiate, and after a time, the bear walked away alone. The negotiations had been successful. The bear had his full stomach, and the hunter had his fur coat.
The moral of the parable is that compromise never satisfies both parties in equal measure.
Relating that to the Christian walk, we could say this: The Christian who compromises his or her Christian values always ends up on the losing end. James 4:4 says, “Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God?” When we compromise with the world, we set ourselves against God’s best guidance and end up getting swallowed by something foolish in the world.
Compromise short-circuits the believer. How do we avoid the pitfalls of compromise? Ephesians 5:15-16 says, “See then that you walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise, redeeming the time, because the days are evil.” Be wise, believer! Walk circumspectly, walk carefully, don’t compromise with those things in the world that can easily cause you as an individual to fall.
Hey… let us all consider the word compromise.