One day in elementary school, my classmates and I were chatting away while lined up at the door to leave the room. Their language was more colourful than mine, with bursts of swear words popping here and there. Suddenly a friend honed in on silent me and realized that I did not swear. In fact, I never swore. She figured that I had never uttered those words in my entire life.
And she was correct—I did not use that type of language. Though I knew that it wasn’t appropriate for a Christian to say those things, I wasn’t about to admit that to her. I shrugged it off.
Then she dared me to swear. She bet that I couldn’t do it.
Not one to fail a challenge, I whispered some ‘things’ for her ears only. (Sorry Mom!) The look on her face was a mix of shock and delight that I wasn’t as ‘goody-goody’ as everyone else claimed.
My venture with swearing was very short-lived; only a couple weeks long. But I had caved into the dare when it wasn’t worth the risk. There was no reward. It was bad enough that I was trying to hide my Christianity, knowing that being a believer was an awkward thing at that age. In choosing to engage in swearing, I took my witness a few steps backwards.
What is it about a dare that is so alluring? Under normal circumstances, we may avoid the temptation. Add in a challenge to perform the opposite way though? Suddenly our inner rebel awakens and we at least entertain the thought, if not follow through.
Why don’t we dare each other in more productive ways? Why not dare someone to graduate with honours? Let’s dare each other to eat well and live healthy lives? No one has ever dared me to live with modesty.
I’d like to challenge you & myself. Not for anything risqué, but to live better. Maybe to change how you think about yourself and your life.
I dare you to trust God more.
I dare you to be obedient, especially when it seems senseless.
I dare you to believe that you are worthy of His love.
I’m linking up with Kate and her five-minute Friday community today.