Proms are still a couple of months away, but I have been asked by a friend to explore this topic now- so as always I am soliciting your wisdom in this discussion.
Did you know that Proms are big business? Literally- millions are spent each year on dresses, flowers, tux rental, limousine service, decorations, photo fees, etc. Thousands of folk earn thousands of dollars every year during prom season.
Did you know that Proms are now basically a rite-of-passage for millions of American teens? It is now such a big-deal event that some even hire prom advisers and prom counselors to ensure the very best prom experience possible.
It is just simply not your grandparents dance anymore.
And in this all-consuming prom climate any voice that calls this tradition into question may get lost in all the noise.
But I am such a voice.
Now before I continue I will admit that I have no clue what may go on at your specific prom. It may be the most well-chaperoned “Let it to Beaver” type dance on the planet. You may just go there to hang-out, get your picture taken, drink punch and leave early. I am not discounting the innocent fun that proms can provide, the thrill they give young people who participate by getting all glamorous for one night, nor am I attempting to indict everyone who attends a prom.
My concerns have to do soley with my own personal experience in the dark ages of long-ago. Then I just followed my crowd to the dance. Now as an old Christian dad I would not want my daughters to go to a prom like I had. Here are my three main reasons:
The atmosphere- let’s just say that most dances do not provide an atmosphere in which spiritual health is encouraged. Do I need to elaborate?
The music- even in my day the music we listened to was very suggestive. Lyrics hinted of drug use and sexual experimentation. Now the lyrics have gone from suggestive to plain-talk to expletive. I know we can turn this type of music off, but not when we dance. Gotta have music to dance, you know.
The moves- many dance moves today are very sexually suggestive- even imitating sex acts. No way participating in these type of dances can please God.
All type of dancing is not sinful. Some dances are recorded in Scripture as done to the glory of God. (Psalm 149:3; 150:4) There are all kinds of dance disciplines today which are every bit an athletic endeavor as any other sport and are a beauty to behold.
And I am sure that not all Proms are cut from the same cloth.
But before you decide to prom or not to prom, I hope you will honestly consider how participating may affect your Christian witness or how in participating you can be a Christian witness.