The Loudmouth Protestant

July 18, 2007

Faith is Bigger than Bling

Filed under: cross,crucifix,faith,Lydia Playfoot,purity ring — nickisym @ 2:50 pm

A London schoolgirl by the name of Lydia Playfoot has lost the case that was set against her for wearing jewelry to school. Lydia’s school bans the wearing of any jewelry but she believes that she should be exempt from the law because her ring represents her dedication to purity–read no sex before marriage–as a Christian teenager.

A statement by Lydia reads: “I believe that the judge’s decision will mean that slowly, over time, people such as school governors, employers, political organizations and others will be allowed to stop Christians from publicly expressing and practicing their faith.”

Now someone please stop me if I am wrong, but I don’t believe that Lydia should be raising a stink because they won’t allow her to wear her purity ring to school, and you know why? I can’t remember an edict in Bible that says the wearing of crucifixes, purity rings and chastity garments proves our faith is valid and has more efficacy when we are wearing said accessories than we aren’t.

I have a problem with the fact that people use their jewelry as a crutch and as their identifier to the world that they are part of the body of Christ, particularly because many wear crosses around their neck but have no idea what it really means to “take up their cross daily.” The same people don’t drink in moderation, have premarital sex, curse like sailors, covet, kill, idolize, etc, etc.

The wearing of faith-based jewelry cannot firm up your salvation or stop you from committing sins and it really shouldn’t be a point of contention for any Christian who believes that if someone told them to take it off, it will stop them from publicly expressing their faith. Public expression of faith is as simple as letting the spirit direct you in all you do. Letting God order your steps is the true public expression of faith.

Faith is not expressed by the clothes you wear–“Jesus is My Homeboy” will not make you a believable Christian. Faith is expressed by living a pure life. The Bible says in James 2:20 that “Faith without good deeds is useless.” My understanding of this is that our faith–which comes through Jesus Christ–is also validated by the good deeds that we do. It is firmed up by feeding the poor and giving unto widows, comforting the afflicted and doing good deeds unto mankind. It is not by wearing jewelry.

I Peter 2:13 says “For the Lord’s sake, respect all human authority–whether the king as head of state, or the officials he has appointed.” That makes it pretty clear to me that the school officials telling Lydia she couldn’t wear her purity ring–just as no student can wear any jewelry–means that she should respect the law that has been set forth and not rebel against it. Lydia must know that she loses no portion of her faith because she has to take the ring off. It’s not as though if she takes the ring off she will fall into a downward spiral of sin and premarital sex–but I guess she could if she believes she will lose power by not wearing it during school hours. I understand the concept of the ring as a reminder but she–and everyone else who wears jewelry with spiritual connotation–must be careful not attempt to use it as religion.

I leave you with this last scripture, which is so apropos: “That the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ.” (1 Peter 1:7)

I write this because I want Lydia and her ilk to know that her faith will endure despite her having to take her ring off. You will lose nothing–nor gain anything–by taking off your diamond encrusted cross or your ruby-studded Jesus piece. If God intended the wearing of jewelry to be the prime way to distinguish Christians from their worldly counterparts, then I guess there’d be a whole bunch of people without an identity.

Life goes on without the cross around your neck, but it will stop the moment you forget about the symbolic cross you are to take up daily. Don’t become an idol to your accessory.

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