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04 March 2013

Faith: Fearfully & Wonderfully Made

Fearfully & Wonderfully Made

About a week ago I was having a conversation with a coworker and she made a statement that her hairstylist friend has good hair. It was one of those conversations that started one way and ended another, we were talking about something totally unrelated but somehow she ended up sharing with me the fact that her stylist friend didn't do a good job of straightening her hair and she thinks it has to do with the stylist having good hair, therefore not knowing the fact that additional heat is needed for my coworker's, I guess not so good hair.

Quick sidebar if a stylist is indeed a professional stylist , she should be able to do hair textures aside from her own, just sayin.

Now of course the larger issue and the thing that stood out to me was the fact that my coworker referenced this woman's hair as good. Not hating on her at all in sharing this it brought the topic to mind to blog about based on the lie in this, not to bash my coworker. I'll have to do a blog on the history of the term one day I'll spare you guys for the sake of length here but for anyone unaware of the term, the issue is with the mindset that one hair type is better than another and to be very clear, if you have naturally straight euro hair (although not limited to Europeans of course) you have good hair, if you have kinky course hair we don't say bad hair well those that uses the term but that's what is implied and of course there are a plethora of made up terms to imply kinky hair = bad hair but again that's a series of posts that I'll have to revisit. Continuing when I decided to cut off my perm and wear my own natural texture,

it was due to the conclusion of one thing, God created me and gave me my hair texture. Plus as a new believer my eyes were way open to God's design so I began to appreciate the beauty of my hair texture and others that shared this beautiful hair with me. Many of you know what I'm talking about when as a new believer, all of a sudden flowers are more beautiful, it's like the colors pop more or even the variety of colors in flowers stand out to you and the fact that these things don't just exist but an actual creator created them. You're looking at the birds amazed at how God created them and the variety within them all and us and just all types of appreciation for the things that always existed around us but we may not have been noticed before, or at least didn't care about before. That's how I ended up appreciating natural hair, specifically that of the kinky/coily persuasion. Going to college at Temple University at the time, there were plenty of beautiful natural hairstyles on display as well. I didn't go natural during the natural hair era but a few years earlier. Philly has always had our naturals and I began to embrace the beauty of the hairstyles I'd see even more when I became a believer. Then adding students from DC, Brooklyn and other natural hair embracing cities with students attending Temple University from these areas, I got to enjoy the beautiful array of natural hair and take in the beauty of God's design in that way as well.


It was like I woke up one day and realized God created this hair texture and it's beautiful duh why haven't I seen this before! So I didn't simply say I'm not perming my hair because God made me this way but also I loved what God created and I wanted to rock it vs. not. Without getting into my entire story here, to go natural I cut off all of my perm and wore braids and weaves until my hair got to a length that I was comfortable wearing out and I haven't looked back. Now as a hairstylist I love changing up my look but I haven't in the about 13 years (possibly a little longer) that I've been natural I've never felt a pull to perm or to rock my hair straight due to it being better than and no matter how much I change I always want my own texture in the end. So I came to love who I was and how God created me and the bottom line is this God specifically designed us to be exactly who we are from our hair textures to our frames, the works of His hands are beautiful and He doesn't make any mistakes.


We have to be careful of allowing man made rules and ideals to shape the way we see ourselves. And the thing about this topic, a lot of the self hate taught to people of color had all to do with classism and gaining that control over specific people groups vs. it ultimately being about beauty, essentially it's evil that leads that mentality with the goal of having control not fact as it's presented as being. The Psalmist in Psalm 139 praises God because he recognizes the fact that he is fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139:14). We can't believe we're wonderfully made but also think there is a flaw in God's design. Jesus says in Luke 12:7 that even the hairs on our heads are numbered, now this verse isn't about hair and hair texture of course but God's providence and care for us. But in showing that care pointing out that He is so mindful of us that the hair that was given by Him is also numbered by Him, that much care was put into His creation. Dare I say we don't have a right to judge His creation as something done in error or bad or one part of His creation being better than another. I was watching a youtube vid with my daughter yesterday and the youtuber is a mixed young lady, half black and half white which is a whole other level of how God's beautiful design comes together but she was saying how she had to come to terms with things about herself, her size, having curly hair etc. she had to learn to love herself in spite of basically.


Although the statement was meant to highlight self love it really said although my hair isn't straight I'm going to love what I have, although my hair is a problem, I'm going to love what I have. What we want to get to as people, is my hair is beautiful and I love it, no buts. There isn't a texture better than mines, God didn't make a group of people better than me, I am fearfully and wonderfully made period! I'm not saying be unrealistic to those that may have hair challenges or that you can't appreciate the beauty of God's design overall and simply love the look that someone else has, why I've been a red head now accidental blonde for quite some time now but not due to the fact that I hate my own hair color there is a difference. I have a friend that's a fellow red head lover but not because she hates her dark hair or think it to be a mistake. It's God that created you and society that tells you that in order to be beautiful your hair must be straight or blonde or you must be this size and have that eye color etc. God knew what He was doing when He created you, the ultimate beauty advice and satisfaction in who you are will come from Him. That is where you'll find your identity not the opinion of people and absolutely not that which is designed to oppress you. When there is something you're just not feeling about yourself, talk to Him about it and be reminded that you are fearfully and wonderfully made, God was mindful of you when He created you and He doesn't make mistakes. I decided to present an array of beauties in my collage because although the saying may be a "black thing" the topic isn't. Even those that fit the "ideal beauty mode" experiences a hatred for their design rather inwardly or outwardly. We all need to find our identity in Christ and ultimately dismiss the enemy who plants these seeds with a goal to destroy.


Fearfully and Wonderfully made, God is mindful of you yes even down to your hair follicles. Enjoy the way that He created you and His creation as a whole. Reconsider a hair type, facial feature, skin tone etc. that you've seen as unattractive in the past on another human being even, and re-evaluate your opinion with the idea that that's God's creation in mind. I assure you you'll walk away viewing a person, body type of whatever it may be as beautiful that you once judged to be unattractive. And most importantly, believe what God says about you and feed your mind with His thoughts not made up phrases that were only created to oppress you.


Until next time.


Grace & Peace


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