Thursday, August 28, 2014
We will begin the study of Nazirites tomorrow in my Gospels classes. That will lead to discussions of what girls know that boys don't - and don't want to- understand. One of those topics is the importance of hair to the fairer gender. This entry is from May 3, 2007.
It used to drive me crazy. When I first started coaching girls' basketball, the fingernail polish and matching ribbons drove me up the wall. As time passed, I came to understand that my players were girls before they were athletes. I read where a prominent coach made the point that boys take masculinity for granted but girls often feel the need to reinforce their femininity while they compete. I think there is validity in his view. Jennifer is a perfect example to me. A sophomore now on our high school team, she was my point guard in middle school. During the NCAA men's basketball tournament, she confessed that she picked the team she rooted for by determining which school had the cuter guys. (Shockingly, other young ladies in my class share her outlook.) Earlier this week, Jennifer entered my classroom for her fifth period Bible class and I complimented her on her hair. It resembled the hair in one of those Miss Clairol television commercials. She was obviously very pleased with the way it looked that particular morning. As we prepared for our quiz, I asked the female students if they could tell as soon as they woke up in the morning if it was going to be a good hair day or a bad hair day. With one accord, they unanimously agreed that you could. The boys were incredulous but I've received the identical response each time I've asked over the years. Girls just know. Since at that age hair is so important, it must be a component in the perceived success or failure of any particular day. (My all-time good hair-bad hair student was Mary Ellen, an eighth grader in my classes in Tennessee during the frizzy/boofy hair period. Sometimes she loved her hair, sometimes she despised it, but it looked the same to me every day of the week.)
It's pretty amazing to me that the value of a twenty-four hour span could hinge on unruly hair. How shallow is that? Well, I have to admit that some days have been ruined in my estimation by much more trivial matters. The Scriptures remind us that the Lord has a round of delights for his children on a daily basis. In the middle of the mournful Lamentations 3, Jeremiah does a U-turn with these words:
"Because of the Lord's great love we are not consumed,
for his compassions never fail.
They are new every morning;
great is your faithfulness."
The blessings of the Lord await us when we struggle out of bed, even before we steal a hesitant glance in the mirror or run a comb through our matted hair. Our grooming may be less than perfect in the short-term but it shouldn't matter. If hair issues can be detected at the crack of dawn, we should detect God's loving mercy as we embark on his mission for a day in the life. Good hair day or bad hair day; the Lord made them both. We have to rejoice about that.
Applicable quote of the day:
"Hair brings one's self-image into focus; it is vanity's proving ground. Hair is terribly personal, a tangle of mysterious prejudices."
E-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Posted by Steve Hawley at 7:49 PM