Secrets, Secrets

Posted on June 26, 2012

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Know what I hate about Victoria’s Secret models?

(This might sound like a bad joke, but bear with me…)

A lot of people hate that Victoria’s Secret models flaunt themselves in lingerie.  But I don’t hate what the Victoria Secret models show.  Yeah, you may think they show a lot.  But trust me, they’re covering up even more.

Leading up to a show, Victoria’s Secret Models starve themselves. They don’t eat food. Their crime is not that they are immodest, it’s that they’re imaginary.  They don’t have real people bodies, and only show themselves during the best 2 hours of their life on the runway.  How many women and men has this hurt?  How many get sick and die as a result?

Ok, let’s be honest- it’s easy to hate on Victoria’s Secret models.  But what are the equivalents in our own lives? What are the things that we hide that make the things that we flaunt look completely different?

Shout it from the rooftops

A few weeks ago, author and blogger Rachel Held Evans wrote a post titled “The Sanctity of Secrets in a Public World.”  In this post, her readers got a glimpse into what it’s like to be famous on the internet- Rachel started to feel like every moment of her day was made public, and there was nothing sacred and special left.  On a sabbatical from the internet, she felt convicted to start keeping more secrets.  She went so far as to write, “I’ve been reading through the Gospels again, and this time around, I’ve noticed how often Jesus praises secrecy… ”  As I read her blog, I started feeling more and more confused.

Because I felt like God had been sending me the exact opposite message.

I kept reading verses like this:

“Everything that is secret will be brought out into the open. Everything that is hidden will be uncovered. What I tell you in the dark, speak in the daylight. What is whispered in your ear, shout from the rooftops.” Matthew 10:26-27.

and this,

“For nothing is hidden that will not be made manifest, nor is anything secret that will not be known and come to light.” Luke 8:17

I have always been the type of person who wants to shout society’s secrets from the rooftops (i.e.  VICTORIA’S SECRET MODELS ARE PHYSICALLY SICK PEOPLE).  But lately, I have started feeling convicted to tell more of my secrets.  To answer honestly if a friend’s question touches a sensitive (read: private) area of my heart.  To share my story (the unedited version) if it is time.  To practice a life where I have nothing to hide.

So who was right- Rachel, or me?

Ponder these things in your heart

For some people, it’s actually a wonderful thing when their secrets are shouted from the rooftops.  I just read an article about 9 sisters who kept a wonderful secret- for 30 years.  They each saved $400 a month and used it to quietly and strategically do good deeds.  They paid people’s bill, baked hundreds of pound cakes, and helped anyone they could think of who needed it.

One day, one of the sisters got caught.

“[My husband] brought out bank statements and they were highlighted!” Mary Ellen said, recalling the horror she felt. “I tried to explain that I had bought some things, but he had this look on his face that I’d never seen before — and I realized what he must have been thinking. I called the sisters and said, ‘You all need to get over here right away.’”

In response, the sisters told their husbands about the secret good deeds they had been doing for 3 decades. What a wonderful thing for your spouse to catch you doing in secret!

What if we are completely wrong about which things to show and which things to hide?

Rachel Held Evans was onto something.  In fact, I think we were both right about what God was trying to teach us. Jesus wants us to keep secrets, but the kind that will honor us when he someday shouts them from the rooftops.

I  bet that if those sisters read the Bible verse that said “Everything that is secret will be brought out into the open,” it would not sound like a threat.  It would sound like a promise.  A promise that all their quiet good deeds would be brought to light, and that they have not yet received their REAL reward for all the things they had done.

So don’t be a Victoria’s Secret Model and mix up what to flaunt and what to cover up.  May you live in such a way that you look forward to the day that Jesus shouts your secrets from the rooftops.

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Posted in: Seriously