Tuesday, January 19, 2010
Growing Your Hair Long
Here are some thoughts I've had on the controversial question: Should a woman grow her hair long? I've also included some tips for growing your hair long, if you'd like to do so!
The Bible teaches us that men and women are distinct from each other. Men are to be masculine, and women are to be feminine (Deuteronomy 22:5). Part of a woman's distinctive femininity is her long hair.*
"Doth not even nature itself teach you, that, if a man have long hair, it is a shame unto him? But if a woman have long hair, it is a glory to her: for her hair is given her for a covering." (1 Corinthians 11:14-15)
As we read more of the Bible, we find that a woman's hair and head "covering" is a symbol of the greater reality of the covering of Jesus Christ provides for His beloved Church (Genesis 3, Psalm 140:7, Isaiah 3:20-30, 1 Corinthians 11:3-8, Ephesians 5:23).
Sadly, many a Christian woman has lost sight of the fact that her hair is a glorious symbol of her protected, cherished, forgiven position in the hierarchy of God's creation. Some women who want to grow their hair long feel afraid or conflicted about it, or may just not know how. Watching Oprah, reading the women's magazines, or talking with friends, many women are receiving the worldly, pressuring message--contrary to God's Word--that long hair is a burden, a shame, and the glorious thing to do is to cut it all off!
Feminists often cut their hair short because they see it as a glorious "freedom" from the "covering" and protection of God and man. That is why, after hundreds of years of keeping their hair at full-length, women cut off their hair during the rebellious feminist and Marxist times of the 20th century, especially since the 1920's. That is why a woman will feel angry and want to cut off her hair (Jeremiah 7:28-30) when she has been cut off from masculine protection (sometimes at her own instigation) and has been abused by a man. That is why, ironically, extreme feminists will often cut their hair very, very short to make it look like the hairstyles of men (Deuteronomy 22:5).
In this post, I would like to encourage ladies to grow their hair! How long? The Bible doesn't spell out an exact length--and I don't think it is important how long. I encourage you to read Scripture to get a better idea of God's perspective of a woman's hair, and the more important understanding of Christ's relationship with His Church.
Here are some questions you might want to ask yourself: Do I feel very feminine and distinctive (unlike a man) with my hair this way? Do I feel feminine when I care for my hair, dress it, braid it, comb it? Do masculine men, especially men who protect and cherish me, seem to appreciate my hair this length? Am I able to keep it healthy and well-cared-for at this length?
In my experience, I had never been able to grow my hair past my shoulders. I had always wanted to grow my hair longer, but felt somehow that I "couldn't" grow my hair. I never felt like my hair looked "right" and tried all sorts of expensive, damaging treatments, such as dyeing and perming, to try to make it look "right." Then, I researched various ways to grow my fine, straight hair and put them into practice as an experiment. Six years later, my hair is healthy and waist-length, and I am very happy with it!
As you read the list below, notice how the very acts of caring for long hair train a woman to be more feminine and gentle.
Here are some tips to grow your hair healthy and longer, whatever length that is for you!
1) Stop going to hair salons. Don't listen to hair stylist fashionistas and TV commercials which have money-worshiping, worldly, feministic reasons to undermine you in this area.
2) Trim your hair yourself at home. Here are instructions on how to self-trim long hair. Also, trim only damaged individual hairs if you can. Here are instructions on how to "dust" your hair.
3) Stop coloring, bleaching, frosting, perming, straightening, and heat styling. Be very gentle. If your hair is very damaged, you may have to cut off the damaged hair and start over. Trust that God made your hair the "right" color and texture, and He'll grow it the "right" length, too.
4) Comb gently and slowly through damp hair with a wide-tooth comb. Never use a brush on damp hair or very curly hair.
5) Use jojoba oil, cocoa butter, or even cooking oil on the ends of hair if the ends seem dry.
6) Stop using hair accessories that pull, rip, and damage hair. Be very gentle.
7) Learn hair styles that keep your hair femininely confined in braids and updos.
8) Wear flowers and ribbons in your hair. Wear hats and scarves over your hair, especially in worship service, to remind yourself of the unearned covering and loving protection the Lord provides you.
9) Comb your hair gently before you shampoo, and shampoo very gently with the minimum amount of shampoo. Never pile your hair on top of your head and scrub. Use the pads of your fingers when you shampoo. Rinse very throughly and gently.
10) Wear your hair long no matter what age you are. The world is totally wrong when it tells us that women become more masculine as we age because of hormone changes. You are fully a feminine woman all your life, no matter what stage or season of life you are in. (Remember Sarah, who though old and past childbearing age was so beautiful in her godly grace that a king desired her and took her from Abraham. God protected her from the king's advances.) The younger women need to be able to look up to the older women who have the godly courage to remain beautiful and distinctively feminine as they age.
"In that day shall the LORD of hosts be for a crown of glory, and for a diadem of beauty, unto the residue of his people, And for a spirit of judgment to him that sitteth in judgment, and for strength to them that turn the battle to the gate." (Isaiah 28:5-6)
* If you are sick, and don't have any hair or must keep your hair very short, you can still be feminine and "covered." First, and more important, you can be covered by the grace of God through faith in Jesus Christ. Secondly, and less important, you can wear pretty scarves, hats, and wigs. I am speaking against a rebellious, feminist spirit in this post, not against ladies who have a physical illness.
If you have any long hair tips or stories, I hope you'll share by commenting!