When I did some research on the idea of “window dressing” in preparation for this article, the results of a Google search on the topic basically amounted to two broad explanations of the expression. The first is the original, and literal, defintion of the word, which involves creating an attractive display of merchandise in a store window to draw customers in, and the other describes the practice of making something appear deceptively attractive or favorable. It is the second defintion which concerns this issue of the newsletter, but I found the juxtaposition of these two explanations particularly interesting when applied specifically to the world of the consumer and the world of the religious. Why is it that when it comes to selling products in stores, window dressing is simply considered good marketing, whereas when it comes to our personal lives, it is considered deceptive?
I believe it has to do with what one is selling and the market to which it is being targeted. In the first instance, a store does all it can to make its products inviting and to convince the customer of his or her need for it. It is reflective of all the morals and practices of the world that the products we as consumers buy do not always live up to the our expectations of them in the store. Material goods are not made to last.
However, a Christian who constantly tries to make himself appear more devout and dedicated than he really is has forgotten the marked to which he is promoting his product. He has become concerned with what the world thinks of him and how he can elevate himself in the opinions of others. But God is not of this world. Our value is determined not but what others think of us, but by what God thinks of us. It is useless to continue window dressing for the benefit of others when God knows our hearts and all the sins we struggle with. Our Creator knows that our body is not made to last. What counts is inside and how we choose to use it.
SFT Awareness is a unique ministry which teaches its participants to rise above the trappings of the world and to put their self-worth and hope in the Lord. When the only opinion which matters to you is the Lord’s, you can put away the need to window dress for your peers. God already knows what is behind your frills anyway. Focus on changing your inner self to be more pleasing to God and the worry about your outward appearance will cease to matter.