So here’s how it goes. Last year my Director of Christian Education (the fabulous, amazing, all powerful and hilarious), Katie Cashin (find her blog at The Very Hungry) and I went on a Lenten Journey together. We stripped color from our wardrobes, makeup from our faces, and product from our hair. And we’re doing it again.
It was a profoundly moving experience.
Here are the rules and a few exceptions for myself: Funerals (makeup) and when I am in Cuba (because I don’t have black summer clothes), and pajamas. Because of these exceptions I will NOT be taking Sundays off. I will wear all black, navy blue, or dark grey (all with little to no pattern) for 40 days. I will not wear makeup. I will not straighten my hair. I will limit my jewelry to my wedding band and silver studs. Only Black shoes will be permitted. I am not allowed to buy any clothes or shoes as I have to use what I already have. I have set everything I own for this journey aside in my closet and all the other clothes get “put away”.
But why again?
Well, again, see the blogs above. But last year was a profoundly moving experience. I had to be as “close to as God intended” I had to “make due with what I was given” and because I didn’t have to think about what I was wearing or who I was going to impress with the way I looked, I only had myself to rely on. So much in our society tells us that we need to dress to impress and always look my best. My funky jewelry tells people I’m eccentric and my shoes show people I’m not afraid to mix styles. I admit, by the end of the 40 days last year I was SICK of the black, but the real practice is: How much time do I put into these expectations of the world, “prettying” myself up, when all the while ignoring my Creator? Even the 5 minutes it takes to pick out an outfit. The 10 minutes to dry my hair and put on makeup, and the hour it takes to pick the right earrings to go with this ring (okay, a little exaggeration, but really jewelry takes the longest for me…).
I will be doing other lenten practices too. ReThinkChurch’s Lenten Photo-A-Day (follow this blog or on Instagram) and Fat Pastor’s Thank You Notes (not like Jimmy Fallon, but maybe…). These lists are both from last year, but I will be following them anyway.
Wish me luck!