Our True Colors

    “Our True Colors,” New Era, July 2016, 46

    Our True Colors

    Shelby W., Missouri, USA

    girls with flags

    Illustrations by Ben Simonsen

    My sister and I had both been chosen to be on our school color guard (flag team). We were so excited, and we practiced daily so that we could be at the same level of expertise as the others who had been doing this for years. After a long summer of practice, it was time to take a picture of the entire color guard and marching band. For the picture the guard girls were asked to wear an outfit that was very tight and revealing. My sister and I were a little upset. We’d been taught to dress modestly, and we knew this should be no exception.

    That night my sister and I made a plan. Color guard was important to us, and it was something we loved to do, but we knew that if we lowered our standards, we would be asked to do the same in the future because we’d already done it once. We knew we must be strong and stand up for what we represent, and if our coach and team couldn’t accept that, then we would quit color guard because our standards were too important to us to be changed by a sport.

    The next day, after a lot of prayer that everything would turn out OK, we walked into the gym for pictures, wearing black slacks and T-shirts. The only comments we received from our teammates were that they wished they’d worn what we did because they were embarrassed to be wearing something so immodest. Even our coach agreed! My sister and I were so proud that we’d stood for what we believed in and that we could continue doing color guard! For the past two years, the uniforms had been short or sleeveless, but because we stood up for our beliefs, we’ve been able to modify them to our standards.

    Though it may seem hard, if you stand up for your beliefs, the result may be something you never expected. It may not work out like it did for us, but you’ll never know if you don’t try.