Lauren and Mikaela--identical twins living on opposite coasts--blog about the story of life and their adventures in faith.

3.10.2009

They Watch Us

We are being watched.
Yesterday, Mikaela and I met our good friend Sarah for lunch. We had our food and had begun our usual laughing, chatting, and eating, when all of a sudden a woman came up from behind us and interrupted. She had been watching us.
“Excuse me,” she said. “But I couldn’t help noticing how nicely you are dressed. You don’t see people your age dressed like that very often, so I was wondering if you were Witnesses.”
We looked at each other—at our skirts that we wear every day, at the boots all of us had received for Christmas, and at each other’s surprised expressions. I smiled and simply said, “We’re Christians,” while Mikaela added, “No, we’re not Jehovah’s Witnesses.”
“Oh,” the woman continued, unfazed. “I mean, I’m a Jehovah’s Witness, and I thought, well, what are the chances? There are these girls dressed nicely and so I thought I’d come over and see if you were too. So why do you dress like you do?”
Here was the challenge: crystallize in ten seconds the lessons of a lifetime to a woman who does not believe my Jesus is God. Once again, we three friends looked at each other.
Then I turned to the woman and explained. “We are Christians,” I said. “And we just love dressing in a feminine way so that we look like women!”


While I was hoping that I had said everything I wanted to, the woman made a few more comments and then left us to our much-enlivened conversation. We found ourselves confronted with this question: why does the world associate modest dress and avid evangelism with Jehovah’s Witnesses, Mormons, or even Muslims—anyone but Christians?
The answer is a difficult one. Where have Christians gone wrong? I believe the problem lies in the fact that America has embraced Christianity as a culture and way of life rather than as a relationship. For most of history, Christianity has been as American as apple pie. Now that many people don’t like that sort of pie anymore, the meaning has been dropped and people no longer live Christianity as it really is—a life-changing, mind-altering, clothes-affecting, life-threatening decision that touches every part of one’s life. Many of my generation are simply Christian because their parents were before them.
Let us choose to stop that trend right here.
Let us choose to make it our privilege to seek God as our God and to repent of our sins because Jesus died for us. Let us choose to understand that it is then also our privilege to lay aside the world for God rather than to earn a way to heaven as so many of the cults believe. Let us not worry about how God has convicted others to live; let us simply live how God wants us to live. (For me that means wearing skirts, but for others, the case may be different.) Let us just live entirely for God, knowing that others are watching.
I leave you with a powerful quote from John Winthrop. These words are almost four hundred years old, but time’s effect on true wisdom is meaningless. Hear John Winthrop speak this words about America to you this day:
“For we must consider that we shall be as a city upon a hill. The eyes of all people are upon us. So that if we shall deal falsely with our God in this work we have undertaken... we shall be made a story and a by-word throughout the world. We shall open the mouths of enemies to speak evil of the ways of God....We shall shame the faces of many of God's worthy servants, and cause their prayers to be turned into curses upon us ‘til we be consumed out of the good land whither we are a-going.” (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/City_upon_a_Hill)

In writing this I challenge myself with this thought: we are all being watched. Every day.

Note: The photo is of Mikaela, Sarah, and me after our piano concert earlier this year. Thus, the roses!

7 comments:

  1. That is so good! Thanks for sharing...

    ~Lily

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  2. Thanks, Lily for your sweet comment! It is so fun to hear from you again! Mikaela commented on your blog again, but I don't see it, so maybe it didn't go through. Anyways, it WAS difficult to recognize you girls, and in fact the only one we were sure of was Sarah. We've all grown up, I guess! Be sure to tell Sarah we are praying for her!
    God bless!

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  3. Great post!
    it always amazes me how girls who claim to be "Christians" have nothing to show for it. Nothing except for the fact that they attend church at least once a week! There was a question I heard asked one time that is so true: "If you were taken to court because you're a Christian, would there be enough evidence to convict you?"

    ~thanks for sharing!
    Have a blessed day

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  4. Thought-provoking thoughts, Jacqueline. Thanks! And thanks for the fun tag--we'll do that soon!

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  5. Lauren,
    This post was so well-written and very thought-provoking. Thanks for sharing. : )

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  6. Ruthie--thanks for your sweet and encouraging words!

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  7. Hi, I'm new to your blog :). This post is so true! When I'm wearing my skirts people ask me if I'm a mormon.. or if I'm jewish. It's like you can't be modest and feminine and be a christian. Even my christian friends tease me about my love for skirts/dresses and the fact that I don't wear skinny jeans or tight/revealing clothing.

    Thanks for posting this.

    God Bless,

    Ashley

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