Thursday, June 21, 2012

Mane Theology

Great moments in hair reduction!
Ah, the “summer haircut.”
Definitely overdue. This week even Rebekah, who likes to see a little bit of hair on my head, said “Time for that haircut, Derek. It’s starting to curl at the ends.”
I wasn’t putting it off deliberately. The unruly hair just snuck up on me.
It was a little more every week that went by without scheduling a snip. Eventually… inevitably… something simply had to be done.
Mane Theology: The other part of the equation is my hair history with Rebekah. She snipped heads back at Columbia Seminary to earn book money and date money. She held court Friday afternoons in the lobby of Simon’s Law residence hall; the deal was $2 a cut and cheap at the price when you count the great theological conversation thrown in. Professors and students, all sitting around waiting their turn, it was “the” place to be.
Rebekah continued to cut my hair for the next thirty-two and a half years. This year’s hand surgery put a stop to my sweet deal and, consequently, Candace is the second professional to step up to take a shot at sculpting what’s left of my once flowing mane.
And, yes, back in the 70′s I was that soccer player who wore a headband to keep his shoulder-length tresses in check. But I have to be honest, I really don’t miss it at all – especially when it’s 95-degrees out with 98% humidity.
Candace (Fantastic Sams) making short work of my hair
SURPRISE: What always surprises me is how easy it is to avoid something as simple as a haircut, and how quickly I consistently failed to even notice the significant change in my appearance – even after my hair got to the stage where there was pretty-much no way to comb it, brush it or put it under a hat and still look anything but unkempt.
There is a sense in which habituation takes over even when we clearly don’t want things to be that way any more.
The spiritual parallel here is the lesson from Romans chapter 7 (and please don’t read in anything against long hair – I have no issues with long hair!), where Paul talks about the constant battle he has to fight when it comes to living the faithful faith-filled life of a Jesus-follower.
So I find this law at work: Although I want to do good, evil is right there with me. For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; but I see another law at work in me, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within me.
Paul – the guy who first articulated the fundamental ideas of Christianity – would look in the mirror and realize that there was an inconsistency between who he wanted to be (and knew he could be) and how things actually went down from day-to-day. It’s just too easy to lose our way and there we are, unkempt and unChristlike….
Paul reveals the answer to the dilemma in the first couple of verses in Romans Chapter 8 (you really MUST read the entire chapter).
Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus,because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you free from the law of sin and death.
Down to the fuzz!
Our job is to thoughtfully and intentionally live – day-to-day – in the life-charged truth of Romans 8. And I for one can’t remotely begin to pull off something that HUGE outside of inviting Jesus along for the adventure; and that means every single day.

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