(Originally written, October, 2007)
“It’s All About Hair!”
Come on, let’s face it, when it all comes down to it, worship, missions, church, home, life, everything is really all about hair. Whether it be short or long, spikey or flat, blonde or brown, natural or dyed, worn proudly or hidden under a hat, hair is what it’s all about. We try to get theological and use big words like salvation, redemption, and justification, but when everything is said and done, hair wins the day every time. Don’t believe me? Check out this story from the Gospel of Luke:
“Now one of the Pharisees invited Jesus to have dinner with him, so he went to the Pharisee’s house and reclined at the table. When a woman who had lived a sinful life in that town learned that Jesus was eating at the Pharisee’s house, she brought an alabaster jar of perfume, and as she stood behind him at his feet weeping, she began to wet his feet with her tears. Then she wiped them with her hair, kissed them and poured perfume on them.” Jesus responded to the woman, “Your faith has saved you; go in peace.” (Luke 7:36-38, 50)
You see, it’s all about hair! It’s all about being willing to make yourself look like a fool for the sake of honoring Jesus. It’s about laying aside any pride and pouring out your jar of perfume on the feet of Jesus and drying His feet with your hair. It’s about taking whatever is most valuable to you, whatever you hold most dear, whatever is something that you think that you can’t live without and giving it to Jesus as an offering. It’s about the witness to everyone else around of who is the Lord and Master of your life.
I’ve heard a few comments lately about my hair getting shaggy and suggestions that I might need to get a haircut pretty soon. My response is that I’m giving it to Jesus as an offering of worship. While I am not taking the Nazirite vow like Samson, I am going to donate my hair to “Locks of Love”, an organization that makes wigs for children going through cancer treatments. You see, worship as well as missions is about taking what you have and making it available to Jesus. I may not have a lot of money to donate to cancer research, but I do have hair. I may not make a huge difference in the lives of thousands of people, but I do have the chance to make a difference in the life of one or two.
I ask you to be patient as one of your pastors starts to look like a long-haired hippie. At the same time, though, I challenge you to find something that God has given you and make the commitment to give it up for the sake of touching someone else with the Gospel of love. Let’s all be willing to make sacrifices, even risk looking foolish if it means that we are giving our all in worship to the only who is worthy of everything we can give.
Update: after growing my hair for a full year, I put it small ponytails, cut it, and donated it. Given the chance, I think I’d do it again in a heartbeat.