I think we’ve all had times where we feel as though we don’t fit in and as though we have people all around us judging every step we take. It’s not fun to have these feelings, but I think if we can believe in who we are as Children of the King, we no longer need to be bound by what others think. Rather, we can be confident and know God created us exactly as we are and He thinks we’re wonderful! He might not always like what we do, but He loves who we are and has great hopes and dreams for our futures.
When my two older kids were in grades 3 and 5, I got fed up with the public school system and decided to move them to a private Christian school. I would’ve never had the patience or discipline to do home-schooling and this seemed to be a good alternative. The school we joined was made up of a core group of kids that had been together since kindergarten along with a few here and there like us who had joined somewhere along the way. Often, when someone had a child with issues, parents sent them to the Christian school as if it were a cure-all for their problems. So when my kids started, I felt as though the other parents were watching us and our children trying to decide if these were more troubled children who had joined them or if we were truly there for a Christian education.
My son probably didn’t help the situation because he knew they were all wondering about us so he decided to egg it on a bit. One time when I picked him up for a dentist appointment, he told his classmates that he was going down to juvenile detention for his counseling appointment just to get a rise out of everyone! In a small school, word gets around fast and I found myself having to
defend my son later because of course, we actually did just go to the dentist. As time went on, it was interesting as everyone began to get to know us and realize we weren’t exactly trouble-makers like they may have originally thought. However, we didn’t leave the place without putting our mark on it either!
Rob and his friend, Shaun, were 8th graders and their basketball team was going into tournaments for the championship. They came home one day and said they wanted to shave their heads. They told me the entire team had decided to do it for the championship game. I didn’t see that a little baldness could hurt anyone, but I thought are you sure everyone is doing this? I
don’t think they cared if anyone else did it or not, but these two were determined to make their mark as they left their school and headed towards high school the following year.
Shaun assured me that his mom was OK with it and so after picking them up from school one day, we drove to their friend’s house who owned some clippers to shave the two heads. When we arrived his parents weren’t there so I just stayed in the living room while the boys went upstairs and created their new look! Boy was I in trouble! I didn’t think my husband would care, but he did. And when Shaun called his mom to tell her what he’d done, I could hear her cries from across the room. Oops. Shaun thought his mom said OK!
It ended up that no one else’s parents on the team would allow them to shave their heads so it was Rob and Shaun, once again, making a statement! They didn’t seem to mind though since they were not all that concerned with what others thought about them. It made for a lot of laughs after everyone got over the shock and we had a lot of fun with it.
I look at that situation and think about the times in our Christian walks that we worry so much about what others think that we forget to have some fun in life. Christians and their rules sometimes produce the most stoic, boring people I know! Of course, we need to follow God’s rules and live a righteous life, but what about the fun? Do you think others will want to be Christians if we ourselves can’t even enjoy the simple things in life?
We need to never forget that God has a sense of humor too. He created us didn’t He? Seriously, He shows His sense of humor for example, in children don’t you think? He could’ve had us all be born acting like adults, but He didn’t. He gave us all cute chubby faces that spend way more time laughing and smiling as children than we ever do as adults. He gives us teeth, and then allows them to all fall out. As adults we would be horrified, but as children, it’s just life. I don’t know about you, but I think it’s funny to see little 6 year olds running around without their front teeth without a care in the world! How freeing is that?
I may be 50 now, but I hope I never lose the desire for fun in my life even in my old age. I pray that I never become the person that can’t find the humor or feel free to do something wild and crazy just for the fun of it! I don’t ever want to become so judgmental in my Christian walk that I spend my life worrying about what others are doing or not doing; rather, I want to be free to be the person God created me to be. It may not be perfect or normal, but it is me. So for now, I’m going to hang onto the 3 F’s in my life and rejoice because I’m Forgiven, Fun-loving, and Free to be me! I sure hope you can find them in your life as well!
As a side note, it was inevitable that Rob and Shaun would shave their heads whether I helped in the process or not. They are both currently abroad, serving their country as soldiers in the Army National Guard. Today in their 30’s they still don’t have much hair!