“Cut off your hair and cast it away…”
I case you haven’t already seen or heard, I am now hairless. I am not bald, my hair is actively growing, but I am clean shaven. No, I did not lose a bet, and no, I am not sick. I have been cast as Daddy Warbucks in our community theater production of Annie (showing June 18-20 and 25-27). When I auditioned for the part I was asked repeatedly, “Are you willing to shave your head?” “Of course,” I casually responded, “it’s just hair. It will grow back.”
I never really considered just how attached to my hair I really was. When I catch my reflection in passing, I have to stop and remember that that’s me looking back. My three year old son (who got to help shave my head), is scared of me and having frequent nightmares about hairless monsters. My one year old points and laughs. My wife says she still loves me, but she won’t look at me when we talk. I have discovered a newfound sense of anonymity. No one recognized me in the coffee shop this morning. I could get away with a lot right now.
I don’t think this look will last. For starters, I don’t like having to shave the head every morning. I hate shaving enough as it is; now I’ve tripled the amount of shaving I have to do. I can’t seem to get the shave close and even; there are sections that are shiny, then others that feel like a brillo pad. When I try to pull my shirt off over my head, it’s like Velcro. Add to that the fact that all the ladies in the church keep talking about “all that beautiful hair,” I think I’ll have to let it grow back in.
I made sure that the hair went for a good cause though. I wasn’t satisfied with just shaving for the sake of the play, if I was going to lose my hair, it was going for a good cause. The hair wasn’t long enough for locks of love, but with the help of the church and friends in the community, I was able to raise nearly $500 for Relay for Life.
Until now, I never realized how many Scripture passages refer to hair. There are almost 80 verses in the Bible, but I wanted to pull out just a few (pun completely intended).
- Proverbs 16:31 “Gray hair is a crown of glory; it is gained in a righteous life.” We idolize youth today, and perhaps this is seen most vividly in the ways we try to hide our age. From cosmetic surgery to reverse the signs of aging, to coloring away the gray, we fight to deny our age. Gray hair is seen as a sign of weakness and infirmity by our culture, but what it really shows is dignity and splendor, representing experience, maturity, wisdom, and holiness. In full disclosure, I have been warned that when my hair grows in, it may come in gray, but it was already heading that direction, so I say, “embrace it.”
- Luke 12:7 “Even the hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not; you are of more value than many sparrows.” This is absolutely amazing! The great God of the universe, the Author of all creation, the One who provides the rain and the sun for the fields, and who cloths the birds with beauty and gives them a song, is so concerned with my life that He even knows the number of hairs on your head. Why should I worry about anything?
- Luke 21:18 “But not a hair of your head will perish.” The Heidelberg Catechism teaches that Christ “protects me so well that without the will of the Father in heaven not a hair can fall from my head…” Such is the sovereign hand of God that, while I may suffer the slings and arrows of those who oppose the gospel, though I may even be delivered up by those closest to me, my life is secure in Him. The psalmist says “I will fear no evil, for you are with me…” (Psalm 23:4). Watching my hair blow away in the wind, I knew that even still, God holds me in His hands.
So let me apologize in advance for those of you who will be blinded by the glare in church on Sunday. I’d love to say that I am, like Moses, reflecting the glory of the Lord, but that might be a stretch. I’ll understand if you wear your sunglasses.
Now, anyone got any sunscreen?