My mother loves to tell a certain story about me. I think it is meaningful to her because it was a defining moment – a moment that illuminated a personality trait of mine – weirdness.
Here is the story –
Gayle comes into the room at a function at College Church. She is dressed in a plaid skirt, a pattered blouse with a wide collar, and black textured tights. Mom is standing with her friend Jan who upon seeing Gayle says,
“Esther, how can you let her dress that way?”
Mom replied, “That is what she likes to wear. If people laugh at her – she will get the message.”
I did get the message. The message I got was that if I dressed “weird” I would get attention. I liked attention, I still do.
As an art major in college I could wear any combination and my friends thought I was “expressing my creative spirit”. (It was a bit disconcerting when my friends in the dorm came to my room on Halloween to borrow my everyday clothes as costumes.)
As an art teacher now, I can wear any combination of clothes and I am “artsy”. I have even been called “cute” – odd at 61 years old.
As parents we often fuss about what our children wear. There are certainly times and places to wear certain clothes – or not to wear certain clothes. Some people seem to have an innate sense of “style” and are very definite from an early age about what they want to wear.
Other children could care less. They would wear the same thing over and over or put on the nearest item of clothing not seeming to notice if it is on backwards or not.
Our family had both types of children. Clothing does express personality and can be a window into who our children are becoming or what image they want to convey. It is prudent to take notice.
Colossians 3:12 tells us how we should to be clothing ourselves.
12 Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. 13 Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.
The right “clothes”, what people should notice when they encounter me should be compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.
The lovelest outfit in the world will not cover impatience, meanness, or pride.
I want to make more of an effort to wear those godly clothes every day.