#LentVoices: Dressing Like a Child
Being part of this collaboration has been humbling, the five people I've worked with have such incredible knowledge, skills and understanding. When Sally invited me I was unsure, what could I add? It took me back to this image.
Sally was my tutor as a student, providing professional wisdom, pushing me to believe I could complete my degree and later my Masters. When our family moved overseas she kept in touch and encouraged me in a different role. Returning to the UK, she overlooked the lines of sleepless nights from a six week old baby and lack of traditional experience but saw my potential. She has been an inspiration, leader, support and often given me wisdom I could not see for myself. As part of an act of worship in the Anglican Theological College where we worked, she invited me to anoint her. I remember whispering "I can't, I'm not ordained, I can't... I can't anoint you." Similar to Moses listing his weaknesses and excuses I could have stood for hours explaining why I couldn't. I don't remember her exact words beyond "Of course you can" and a look - not of anger but of confirmation, assurance, equality.
John 13:4 tells us that Jesus took off His outer garments before washing the disciples feet, putting them back on later (v12). Chapter 19 tells us his undergarment was seamless - not like underwear, but a thin fabric, extremely basic and typical of what a child would wear. He laid aside all the titles seen in his clothes, the appearance of the outside and came to the disciples in pure simplicity, like a child.
Our clothes may have changed over lockdown, we may have had a top-half wardrobe displayed to the world for Zoom meetings or have had to give up our work uniform. Jesus reminds us as He comes before the disciples in the ultimate act of humility, it is not about our titles, roles, profession or outer appearance but serving others in simplicity and purity. Children put together the greatest mish-mash of clothes, wellies and a tutu, maybe totally inappropriate for the occasion and yet bringing the happiness of innocence from expectations. I imagine Jesus like this (well maybe not the tutu!)
I wonder what you 'wear' to be accepted or what you need to take off to share life with those around you?
#LentVoices is a collaborative project, please take a look at the contributors: (click on the image)