You don't have to signal a social conscience by looking like a frump. Lace knickers won't hasten the holocaust, you can ban the bomb in a feather boa just as well as without, and a mild interest in the length of hemlines doesn't necessarily disqualify you from reading Das Kapital and agreeing with every word. --Elizabeth Bibesco

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Walk Humbly with Your God

I teach Sunday School to 5th and 6th graders. They are a very intelligent, very energetic group.
Today, we were studying (among other things) Micah 6:8 where God calls on the people, instead of sacrificing oil and animals to Her, to "do justice, love kindness, and walk humbly with your God."

Our activity involved making lists of things people in general and my students in particular could do under the headings of Doing Justice, Loving Kindness and Walking Humbly with God.

Some suggestions I got for Doing Justice were:
Stand Up to Bullies
Put Terry Jones in jail
Protest (Oh, Ann Arbor children)

Some suggestions I got for Loving Kindness were:
Helping children who are lost
Giving people hugs
Not being mean to people

Walking humbly with God was by far the hardest. But I told them about tzniut and how tzniut is based pretty much entirely on that part of this verse (source). Then they got into it and here were some of the suggestions I got:
Do what people tell you
Don't brag
Don't dress in a way that makes people pay attention to you

After this last suggestion, many of the students started to defend why they dressed to attract attention. (I mean, come on, many of them are in junior high and the rest will be soon.) However, one of my (male) students, who I'll call J, said in a remarkably thoughtful way, "I don't usually dress to make people pay attention me..." He paused, and then added, "Except my Converse."

I had to smile-- I loved that he thought dressing not to make people pay attention was important when all of his classmates were arguing against it. I also loved that he was willing to admit that he did wear his Converse shoes sometimes to attract attention! I think God would approve, for sure.


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