In all these conversations I've got to remember my main point: Jesus and salvation. I shouldn't argue for abstinence for it's own sake; if I don't have Jesus, I'm spiritually dead whether or not I'm abstinent. Without Jesus, who is our righteousness, each attempt at obeying the rules and doing things right is a futile grasp at godliness. Thusly, whenever I'm asked why I do something differently than the rest of the world does it, reasons of practicality are secondary to glorifying God.
It is because of him that you are in Christ Jesus, who has become for us wisdom from God- that is, our righteousness, holiness and redemption.1 Corinthians 1:30So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.1 Corinthians 10:31Jesus answered, "I tell you the truth, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born of water and the Spirit. Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit gives birth to spirit.John 3:5-6