Yesterday I got my hair cut and, as usual, it was a different person cutting my hair. I don’t know what I’m doing to run off so many stylists, but every time I get one that I like, that person will be gone the next time I come in for a trim. I really liked the woman that cut my hair yesterday (she’s probably already got a U-Haul rental), and I think what I liked the best was how concerned she was about my tastes. I’ve had lots of barbers and stylists that will begin the session asking me how I liked my hair to be cut, but then they did what they wanted and never asked for my input again until the work was finished. Then they spin the chair back to the mirror and ask if it’s okay. At that point the service is completed, the money is due, and the results will have to be lived with regardless of how pleased or displeased I am. But the stylist I had yesterday must have asked at least a dozen times as she worked if it was looking ok. And because it was, I kept indicating that it was. At one point she laughed and told me how much more she enjoyed cutting men’s hair than women’s hair because women see every little detail and have very definite ideas about how they want their hair to appear. We shared a smile and moved on. But I’ve been thinking about that comparison a lot.
Do you like the way you look spiritually? Are you not “too fussy” about the appearance of the spiritual you, or can you quickly cast a critical eye over yourself and see “the hair out of place”? As you go through life, are you constantly checking in with your soul and asking if things are all right, or do you hope when life is over and the chair spins back to life’s mirror, you’ll be satisfied?
Of course there are some who think they look good all the time. Most of us aren’t in that category when it comes to our physical appearance, but what about the spiritual man inside? Think about what the Lord taught on this subject.
And He also told this parable to some people who trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and viewed others with contempt: “Two men went up into the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. The Pharisee stood and was praying this to himself: ‘God, I thank You that I am not like other people: swindlers, unjust, adulterers, or even like this tax collector. I fast twice a week; I pay tithes of all that I get.’” Luke 18:9-12
Most of us aren’t like that – most of the time. We do see our spiritual flaws. And sometimes we wonder if we’ll ever change. Most of us are more like the women my hair stylist was generalizing about – we see so many things wrong and out of place that we hardly notice how much we have matured in Christ and, in fact, have slowly become more and more like Him as our faith grows.
As our faith increases, we develop spiritually into that transformed, rather than conformed, person we are to be (Rom. 12:2). Peter’s final exhortation is that we “grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ” (2 Pt. 3:18). But that demands that we spin the chair around and look in the mirror a lot! – not for a moment of pharisaical pride in how much better we are than someone else, but to see if we are reflecting the image of Christ. Paul said, “Test yourselves to see if you are in the faith; examine yourselves!” (2 Cor. 13:5). The goal of mirror watching is given in 2 Cor. 3:18 – But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit.
Personal grooming tastes are one thing – but being like Jesus is a serious challenge. Look in the mirror and be fussy!
Keep studying! DC Brown ©2013