Adding to Lent: Day 3

Day 3: Braids

I can remember when our oldest was an only child.  I spent countless hours braiding her super-fine white hair into two French braids every day.  I had waited so long for her hair to grow in, that as soon as I could make two little pigtails on the top of her head, I did…even though they looked like miniature budding horns. 

I have a distinct memory of sitting in a bank lobby as my husband waited for the next available teller.  She sat in my lap, her toe-head shimmering in the sunlight shining through the huge glass panels.  I braided–her tresses so baby fine they could only be bundled in tediously small amounts in order to stay tight in the weaving.  With each cord of hair, I marveled at how iridescent each strand was as it was twisted with the others.  I even found one lone jet black hair among the millions of bright white.  I assumed this kind of attention to detail, along with the ability to marvel at hair, was simply a facet of motherhood.

Now, I am a mother of four.

I’m lucky to spend time brushing through my own messy hair, let alone groom four other heads (and stare at them in wonder?!?!?).  My eldest’s hair has now grown thick and even curly, underneath a top layer of board-straight strands.   Her translucent white hair is now mixed with gold.  She washes it.  She brushes it.  Occasionally, she will stick it in a low ponytail.  My second daughter has followed suit, generally managing her personal hair routine, as well.  I haven’t marveled at hair in a long time.

On this third day of Lent, I added braids.  I started by spraying fancy moroccan aegean oil.  I gently brushed all the tangles and waves until the hair laid against itself in complete harmony.  I began to notice the myriad of color on each girl’s crown, shades of blonde and every glistening hue of copper and gold.

I realized how much I’ve missed marveling at the hair of my children.  (Maybe it is a facet of motherhood–a blessing that I’ve just overlooked.) Even after combing it through, I continued to stroke and examine it, testing it’s colors in varying angles of light.

I added braids…


And through it, God added peace, thankfulness, and joy.

Oh, how He loves me.

If even I, mother of four, can take the time to marvel at hair, how much more often does He look at me?  He pays attention to detail like none other.  And even in His fine-tooth combing, He declares me valuable.

“Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? And not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father.  But even the hairs of your head are all numbered.  Fear not, therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows.”

Matthew 10:29-31

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