I have never liked my hair. Not even when I was four-years-old and my golden locks rivaled those of Rupunzel. Oh, I liked the length, and when it was properly curled and styled I pretended to be a princess…but I did not like the tangles…and even less did I enjoy the pain and aggravation caused by the untangling process.
My mom, being the one who had to listen to my whining protests, decided that my long hair had to go. This decision was made when I was in the fourth-grade, and it was one with which I agreed.
Oh, but there was a downside…when I was in grade four, the year on our annual Mid-Penn Bank calendar read 1984. Why is that date significant? Well…for starters it was the year of the mullet. Sigh. I do wish I had a picture to share.
Not only is the mullet an eye sore, it is a lot of work. My hair still easily knotted in the back and a brush was no longer the sole implement required to style my baby fine tresses. Each morning my mom had to stand over me with a hot curling iron to make the top portion of my head look more feminine…indeed, I do wish I had a picture of the finished look.
Fast-forward 25 years and you will still find me complaining about my hair. In fact, if you are my Facebook friend, you have witnessed my recent turmoil involving a box of home color and my daughter delightfully exclaiming that the results looked beautiful…just like a lollipop. Now of that, I have a picture.
Last night as I sat in the home of my new stylist eagerly waiting for her to transform me into a super model with just a few clips from her scissors, (I tend to have high expectations) she said the most peculiar thing to me.
“You are so lucky to have straight, fine hair.”
“You’ve got to be kidding me…I wouldn’t wish this hair on anyone, plus what is with my crazy hair line in the back that grows upward…and that hideous cowlick?”
“It’s much better than having hair like mine…it’s so thick and coarse.”
I looked at her long, thick, perfectly coiffed blond hair and giggled.
“This is too funny,” I said. “You have my dream hair!”
“Well, I guess we all want what we don’t have,” she replied.
How true that is. For sheep, the grass is always greener on the other side…for women, the hair is always prettier on the other head!
Moreover, it does not stop with hairstyles. Why is it so much easier for me to want something I cannot have than to thank Jesus for the many gifts I possess? I take so much for granted.
Instead of griping about the hair I have, I should be thanking the Lord that I can brush my hair every morning without clumps of it falling to the floor, which is what many women suffering with cancer face daily.
Instead of feeling annoyed by my old raggedy comforter each time I make my bed in the morning, I should pour out my heart in thanksgiving that I have a warm bed and blankets. They may be outdated, but they are clean and functional…much better than newspapers that cover the homeless.
Instead of being annoyed that our budget is too tight to buy Christmas presents for friends this year, I should get on my knees and thank my Savior for the many friends He has given me, and ask Him to show me how to creatively gift them with service, love, time, and kindness.
So while the grass may appear greener, hair prettier, furniture grander, homes bigger, and figures thinner…I’m going to try really hard to not be so interested in the proverbial other side. I am going to focus on how to make my inside look more like Jesus and foster a spirit of thankfulness for all He has given me.
“For it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purpose. Do everything without complaining or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation, in which you shine like stars in the universe.” Philippians 2:13-15 (New International Version)