This past week I cut the boys’ hair…as you can tell. We got some new clippers, and I was pretty excited to put my skills to work. Here are my actions and corresponding thoughts:
- Putting the clippers on the longest setting: “Okay, let’s start long and see how things go.”
- Very little of Ricky’s hair falls off: “Hmmm…that didn’t do much.” So little in fact…
- Ricky made the following contribution: “I want to look like Pepere!” Pepere (pronounced: peh-pay) is the French word for grandpa, so it’s the name our kids have for my dad. I’m not sure if Ricky forgot what my dad looks like…or maybe Ricky had a dream or something where my dad had more hair…or actually had any hair, but I just wanted you to know he said that to help explain my next decision…
- Putting the clippers on the 2nd shortest setting: “Let’s quit messing around and cut some hair; I’m sure it’ll look good.”
- Making one of those nice, long strips right down the middle of Ricky’s head resulting in plenty of hair falling off: “Oh. Wow. Well. Hmm. Uh. That’s really short.”
Ricky wasn’t happy with his haircut….which he’s told me every time I tried to convince him it looked good. If you want to make Ricky’s day (and mine), tell him how good his new cut looks. Anyway, as soon as I saw how short it was, the first thing I thought was, “I can’t go back and undo what I just did.” Now, the nice thing about hair is it grows back, so the second thought I had was, “No big deal.” You’re probably saying, “It’s not your hair, so of course it’s not a big deal to you.” True.
Now I saw a little parallel with the Christian life: sometimes we say, “I can’t go back and undo what I just did.” Many times God is merciful and gracious and there are no lasting consequences; it’s kind of like the hair growing back, but other times that’s not the case. People tend to equate forgiveness with an absence of consequences: “God has forgiven me, so no big deal.” The truth though is God can forgive completely and there can still be terrible consequences. It’s like the hair doesn’t grow back…ever. This is why we want to give careful thought to our ways and the paths of our feet (Hag 1:5, 7, Pro 4:26).