“It is a book about faith. Lynne (Spears) is a Christian. She is not afraid to admit it. She doesn’t wear her faith on her sleeve, but it permeates her life.”
From Thomas Nelson Publishers in Why Did We Publish Lynne Spears’ Book?
What does the phrase “wear your faith on your sleeve” mean? I didn’t really know but it usually is used in a negative sense meaning that someone “doesn’t wear their faith on their sleeve”. That sounds wrong and sets wrong to me but I never really thought about it much. Then I read the above quote from Thomas Nelson Publishers. Well since I’ve never heard anything about the faith of Lynne Spears, mother of the infamous Brittney Spears, I wondered what does this mean?
I could find no real definition of “wear your faith on your sleeve.” There are many sources on-line to research the origin of phrases and idioms. However, I had no success. Nevertheless, there is plenty of information on “wear your heart on your sleeve.”
Wear Your Heart On Your Sleeve:
To openly and freely express your emotions.
Wear your heart on your sleeve
Display one’s emotions openly.
This phrase may derive from the custom at middle ages jousting matches. Knights are said to have worn the colours of the lady they were supporting, in cloths or ribbons tied to their arms.
The term doesn’t date from that period though and is first recorded in Shakespeare’s Othello, 1604.
Using the meaning of “wear your heart on your sleeve” and changing heart to faith would mean you show your faith openly and freely.
Now it is true that there are many that just wear their religion on their sleeve and have nothing in their heart to show for it.
25 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye make clean the outside of the cup and of the platter, but within they are full of extortion and excess.
26 Thou blind Pharisee, cleanse first that which is within the cup and platter, that the outside of them may be clean also.
27 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are like unto whited
sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead
men’s bones, and of all uncleanness.
28 Even so ye also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within ye are full of hypocrisy and iniquity. KJV
But many Christians hide their faith and are unwilling to talk about it or to let it show. Paul compliments the early church believers because their faith is known worldwide.
Rom 1:8 First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for you all, that your faith is spoken of throughout the whole world. KJV
1 Thess 1:8 The Lord’s message rang out from you not only in Macedonia and Achaia — your faith in God has become known everywhere. NIV
Philemon 6 I pray that you may be active in sharing your faith, so that you will have a full understanding of every good thing we have in Christ. NIV
Will the Lord have to ask you where is your faith because it is not seen?
Luke 8:25 And he said unto them, Where is your faith? KJV
2 Tim 2:12 … if we deny him, he also will deny us: … KJV
Matt 10:33 But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven. KJV
Your faith should be evidenced by your actions and good works.
17 Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone.
18 Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works. KJV
Don’t let someone be able to say about you – they “don’t wear their faith on their sleeve”!
Be sure to wear your faith on your sleeve and in your heart!