Mixing It Up Right

Wartime Hair Dresser REVYesterday I finally made time to color my hair. Yes, I color my hair. If I didn’t, it would be three {very unattractive} shades darker and streaked with gray. I’ll go gray…eventually. Just not quite ready for that yet. ANYWAY…

As I sat there on the floor in the bathroom waiting the set amount of time for the color to process (45 minutes to cover gray) I couldn’t help but have some time to think. I remembered the time, probably at least seven or eight years ago now, when I really messed up this process. That was when I bought the boxed kits at Wal-Mart–before I discovered that you could buy much better hair color at Sally Beauty Supply.

In the kits were three tubes–color, developer, and conditioner. The key was to mix the color and developer together and, after the set amount of processing time, to use the conditioner after it was rinsed out. Well, this time, I wasn’t paying very close attention (didn’t spend much time on me, homeschooling young kids) and I accidentally mixed the color with the conditioner. This wouldn’t have been a big deal if I would have caught it. I could have just went to the store and bought another box. But I didn’t catch it. Not until it had sat on my head for thirty minutes (didn’t have much gray back then) and I had rinsed it out and went to grab the conditioner.

Oh, no! Now what?

Well, I had no choice now, did I? I rinsed my hair out as best I could and proceeded to style it. Oh, my word! I had helmet hair in the very worst sense of the phrase. My hair lay, in all its lackluster and vapid glory, completely flat against my head. Hair full of body has never been my best feature, but that was…well, awful. For weeks afterwards, I had the flattest, dullest hair around. It was embarrassing. To say the least.

So why this incident came to mind yesterday, I have no idea. But for some reason I did think about how parenting is so much like this.

The color is God’s Word, the developer is living by God’s Word and a robust prayer life, and the conditioner is love and discipline. So follow along with my thinking here–

If we mix God’s Word with only love and discipline, but don’t have the life to match, we will raise kids who don’t see God making any difference in our own daily lives. If our kids are hearing God’s commandments in church or even from our own mouths, but then, in our daily lives, they are hearing us scream at each other or they are hearing offensive music on the car radio or they see the seething romance novel on our bedside table, no matter how much love and discipline we meter out, our parenting will fall flat.

We have to be who we want our kids to be.

Unfortunately, that is the way that works best. Oh, sure, sometimes, God is in His grace rescues a child from becoming like their parent–and we thank Him for that. But as I observe the world around me and the many hurting families, I wonder if our examples at home aren’t messing up our testimony in front of our own kids. Every time our kids hear us lie, every time we watch or listen to something that doesn’t glorify God, every time we treat our spouse with disrespect, every time we react in pure and unadulterated anger to our son or daughter’s childish mistakes, we destroy our testimony.

Parenting is such a wonderful privilege but it is no easy task. Remaining genuine and transparent in our own homes isn’t that difficult. But setting a godly example and pleasing the Lord with our choices and actions in our own homes–now that’s hard.

I don’t know if it’s always been like this, but I know I have to fight against my own selfish desires every day. This culture, where instant and complete gratification of any and all desires, reigns supreme, has crept into even the lives of us sincere Christians. I really have to work to keep God number one in my life instead of myself.

But, just like that hair color, if I mix it up wrong, it will not end well. And the big–the tremendous–difference is that, while my constantly growing hair provides me with second chances, we don’t have that second chance with our kids. We have to do it right the first time.

And that’s where the robust prayer life comes in, which is also a part of the very critical developer.

And then the conditioner, comprised of both love and discipline, makes this parenting thing go so much more smoothly.

Okay, so my analogy may not be all that great. Who knows where I come up with some of these things? But, at any rate, I hope I gave you a little something to think about on this day.



4 thoughts on “Mixing It Up Right”

    1. One of the things I hate about blogging is that I can never tell the spirit with which a comment is given. Are you just curious? Are you sarcastic? Or are you mean-spirited, trying to discredit me?

      I don’t know your intention. However, I can say with confidence, that I certainly have not “arrived” in this spiritual growth thing, and obviously, that is a lesson I haven’t fully learned yet.

  1. I am not sure where your response is coming from. I am just trying to understand the reasoning behind your opinion.

    Based on your response are you saying that you have now grown and no longer condemn plastic surgery?

    1. No, what I am saying is that this a lesson I still need to learn. I still believe that plastic surgery (for reasons that aren’t medical) is vanity in the extreme. As for your argument– coloring my hair–I realize that I still have some growing to do in this area of vanity myself. I plan on giving that some thought. Thanks for the comments.

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