A short observation concerning the dressing of hair

We were at church on Sunday in a larger parish than our usual home church, so I got to see the backs of more heads than most First days. I was suddenly struck with a deja vu thought: Do women realize that from behind, it looks like they all go to the same hairdresser? This was so literally true in one church we used to attend that it was stunning! Quite obviously the local beautician gave everyone the identical cut! Even in this larger community the layered, waved and lacquered look was prevalent. Ladies, just because we are over thirty does not mean we have to wear helmet hair.

And how is that “uniform” hair style any different from wearing your hair long, pinned and covered with a cap? One of the principal differences is that I spent pennies on my handmade caps, (and if one has to purchase them, it is a cost of $10-$15 per cap, with maybe a need of three caps) while many women spend upwards of $50 a month on hairstyling. And it takes me minutes to brush, pin and cover my hair rather than twenty minutes or more to comb, style and spray it into place. I don’t need special sleep caps or pillow covers to protect the ‘do, either. As for haircolour – God gave me what is suitable to my complexion, and soon it will match my husband’s handsome silver mane. It seems strange that he is completely grey and is younger by six months, while I still have most of my natural chestnut brown. I am enjoying entering my “sage” years, and the less time I spend on my personal appearance (beyond clean, neat and modest) the better. Vanity is time wasted. It is time spend thinking about ourselves and not others.

Exploring the Christian cyberworld

We all know any nutbar with a computer can jump online as an expert anything, and people will just believe it. The internet is the newest way to spread urban legends, hoaxes and strange prophecies. Christianity has always been plagued by this sort of thing. The pre-modern version of the internet, after all, was the church door, where all kinds of notices and news were posted. People hung out in the church porch to idle and gossip. Markets were usually in the church yard or at the market cross just beyond the church. The old fellers who no longer worked hung round, the young fellers with a day off met up with friends, and the women of all ages  too a few minutes or more to exchange greetings and news with neighbours. It was  a great place to start a rumour.

I tell thee this by way of warnign thee to be discerning. Discernment can be simple common sense, but for Christians it can be and should be more. When we hear something we think may change our lives, when we have decisions to make, then we have to approach it with three other cautions: What does the Bible say? What does the Christian community say? What does my heart in prayer say? All these cautions give us the opportunity to hear the Holy Spirit speaking to us. Common sense, Biblical intepretation, community contribution, and the word of the heart may each fail separately if we emphasize one too much over the other, but when they come close to agreeing, or two or three cuations agree closely, then we may with confidence know that the Lord has given us an answer of peace.

I came across all this while looking at sites on Christian headcovering. We all know the Bible passages well; if not, any one of these sites will direct us and even furnish a suitable pericope in a favourite translation! What struck me is that ninety percent of these sites are written by men. If there’s one field of theology where women should take the lead and expound it must be about headcovering!

I suppose some of this is from the question of headship. If a man is head of his wife, and Christ head of the man, then the man should be ableto tell the woman when to cover, how to cover, and why to cover. But this is not the sort of obedience God meant us to follow. God tells us He wants us to be obedient, but the decision is ours. We aren’t ordered to obedience with wrathful vengeance. A woman is first of all to be a Christian, and to follow Christ. She is in Christ the equal of her husband. Her Godly wisdom may even exceed his, and the husband needs to honour this, listen to his wife, consult her on family and business matters, and sometimes concede the decision to her for the good of the family. I am in that situation right now. Nicholas is still suffering from the damage caused by his stroke, and he knows that he does not always understand the situation completely, so a lot of decision making is left to me. Still, I talk to him about decisions, ask his viewpoint, and even ask him what he thinks we should do.  But he’s willing to let me decide.

So why do men weigh in with a lot of opinion on what God means for women? Why isn’t this a woman’s theology? In the matter of family obedience, a woman must first agree to the marital relationship. She cannot be ordered into it, and once her agreement is secured, then the issue of obedience arises. Of course, I believe women are under the headship of their husbands. I believe women should be obedient to their Christian husband, just as he must be always mindful of the needs of his wife and family, and put them first. And while men may have opinions on the dress of Christian women, it is the women themselves that St. Paul addressed, not their husbands. He reasoned with them, made his case, pointed out their obligations. He didn’t say to the men, “Make your wives do this!”

I am glad to see that many women make the decision concerning headcovering for themselves, and even that those whose husbands do not like it are willing to obey. I would like to see more women write about this important subject, for that is what will carry weight with other women. Some may even present good arguments for not covering!

No Hurry?

This is just a short comment, I guess. Ever have the conviction that you just need to wait for something, that waiting is the right thing to do, that all the rushing around and decision making are going to get you nowhere?

All I want to do right now, under great conviction, is wait for God’s work to be done.

It’s really apparent to me that I need to be at home with Nicholas. He still needs a lot of help getting things done, and his vision and balance are still so poor. He sleeps a lot. Some basic chores, such as food prep, are beyond him right now. Yet so many people (including my own little conscience, socially conditioned as it is) say, “Why aren’t you working? Do you expect something for nothing?” And yet I am doing so much. We just need to get through while the government sorts out all the disability pension stuff – and that’s an insurance plan, not a handout. (Please don’t anyone say that again to me or this hardwon, prayed-for self-control is going to CRACK!) I feel like a new mother who has laid aside all her career expectations to care for her child at home. (“Are you just going to waste that degree?”)

It is very difficult for me to just quietly accept all the criticisms I’ve been hearing. I need to get tougher, I suppose. Shrug it off and do what I think is right.

Right now, that’s doing not much of anything active, making the necessary phone calls and not panicking.

And praying.  (I’ve been sleeping better at night, so God must think I don’t need those extra three hours of prayer!)

So please, no more nagging out there. No more, “Get off your (***) and do something!” I am doing something, and I am not required to report what to anyone I know of. If anyone wants to do something to help us, start with prayer.


I just had a nice time looking at the witness of a headcovering young mother at knittingprose. I suggest you give her well-written, informative blog a look! She recommends an etsy shop called “Garlands of Grace,” and I was impressed by their pretty, feminine and not at all Anabaptist headcoverings! For those who are not called to the prayer cap and the flat-Plain way of dress might be interested in their products – snoods, wide bands, kerchiefs and long coverings.

JUST THE FACTS (and some opinion, of course, cause it’s my blog)

I’ve been getting some nasty political type comments from people who think I am looking for a “government handout.” I assume a lot of this comes from the United States. I thought I cleared this up. Let’s look at the facts. In Canada, everyone who is employed pays into a pension fund, similar to Social Security but not exactly the same. Everyone is guaranteed at least a small Old Age Pension even if they never worked. And it is very small – less than what most people need to support themselves if they never had the opportunity to contribute.

The same fund, which is really a state sponsored insurance plan, provides a disability pension for those who become unable to work. I do not benefit from this myself. It is for my husband, and it won’t be much. Most of you out there with jobs make in a week what we expect to see for a month’s income. It will help us get through the time when I need to be at home full-time with him. Social Assistance is miniscule here, less than what most people spend on groceries. It is an emergency only fund, and if one collects it while awaiting a pension, the monies are repaid to the province when the pension is approved. So Americans who think Canadians live in a socialist paradise are mistaken.

I do believe that if one has paid into an insurance fund one should be able to collect from it when qualified. It shouldn’t be so complex.

And the church does have an obligation to help those in need, longterm as well as short-term. I would very much like to be working for the church again, although not in the same paradigm as before. My expectations are much less than they used to be.

“Self-sufficiency” is a lie. We all need others, and Christians especially need other Christians. Consuming less and producing more is the goal of Christian homesteading, I believe, living gently on the earth. So I’m not talking homesteading as in isolationism, but a community effort to be productive and live in harmony with God’s will for His creation.

And I think it cowardly to flame people in blogs, general comments and other internet publication opportunities. I don’t know who you are, where you are, or if you are telling me the truth. And I am sick to death of this “stand on your own two feet or die and get out of the way” neo-conservative, extreme American Republican nonsense. McCain and Palin lost the election for a good reason. Most of the voters didn’t believe their plan would work.

For those who are so sure of themselves, go read Charles Dickens’s “A Christmas Carol.” Most of you sound like Mr. Scrooge saying to the charitable gentlemen, “Are there no prisons? Are there no workhouses?” Jesus said, “Love one another, as I have loved you.” And He gave everything for us, even His life, so that we too may share His glory. To quote, once again, Bishop N.T. Wright: “Jesus is Lord; Caesar is not.” That is the true gospel message, and amen.

More on Homesteading

Discernment has been completed; we wait until next spring to homestead. I opened the issue to our local church community, and too many people love my dear husband to want to spend the winter worrying about him! So we are looking for a living situation on road, with telephone.

But we are sure we are called to live the country life; it is not just the continuation of our crazy seventies coming-of-age. The world is changing, many of thee know this. Christians must stand up to be counted, as Christians, as standing for a better Way, as standing for Christ and God’s creation. The materialism of modern life is not the way of Christ. He had nowhere to even lay His head unless it was given by a friend.

I am going to state this plainly, as I should:

We are not capitalists. We are pacifists. We are not liberal, nor conservative. We are Traditional, Plain, and Anglican. We are orthodox in our theology and Bible interpretation. We are not going to pursue careers or rise in the organization.

I am going to hold with my policy of granting comment to other Christians. If you are going to tell me that prayer is wrong and doesn’t work; that my faith is juvenile, egotistical or fanatical; if you don’t believe in the Bible:

Comment elsewhere. Start your own blog.  There are lots of agnostics and atheists who will let you slam christians all you want.

This is not the place for that.

This is a place for sisters (and brothers) in the faith. Anyone is welcome to read, but keep your comments uplifting and helpful. I will not have my blog turned into a catfight.

Unity and peace are not achieved by hateful words, blame-placing and fighting. We are not here to work out your disappointments in the church or with me!

Complications, as usual

Sometimes we wonder why the Lord keeps us waiting…

Nicholas’s application for a disability pension was turned down. We are without income. We have been depending on family, friends and the church community to keep us going this while. Now we are literally down to the last pennies and praying hard…

If anything, this has deepened our resolve to stay where we are, but we may be reduced to eating burdock roots and wild apples, and maybe hazelnuts if the squirrels don’t get them all.

Yes, we have tried social services – we don’t qualify because we don’t have a street address! I have phone calls in everywhere, trying to get things striaghtened out. Mostly, I pray.

Friends, please pray for us, that we will not be forced into a life that is not worth living. Our biggest fear is that we will be separated if I have to return to the United States to work, since Nicholas does not have a passport and cannot cross the border at this time. (New regulations – as if that is going to stop criminals and terrorists, who have read all the John leCarre novels and have fake IDs.)

Someone said to me that when God closes a door, he opens a window, but I really don’t see what that is supposed to mean – do we climb through the window to escape, or are we waiting for something to blow in? Lately, that’s been hurricanes!

Many thanks to all of thee for thy prayers and advice. I have learned a lot.