Courageous Choices

Big clumps of hair fell from my head to the floor. It was too late to turn back now.

I’d been thinking of making a dramatic change to my hairstyle for two weeks before my appointment. After recent travel to hot, humid places with ocean breezes and a spring heatwave of our own, I’d become increasingly frustrated with my fine, limp hair. The two best options for such conditions seem to be longer hair swooped back into a ponytail or a short sassy style that just doesn’t care. Not only does my hair grow at the speed of molasses flowing uphill, my ponytails always require bobby pins to tuck in the shorter, broken hair on the sides and top. So, I considered option two and did some Google image research.

Of course, the hairstyles I liked the most were attached to the heads of gorgeous models much younger than myself, and I’d like to think they were Photoshopped just a bit. Could I pull that off? Was my hairdresser experienced enough to produce a similar look? I downloaded a couple apps on my phone which claimed to add a variety of hairstyles to a photo of my face: a great idea but a waste of time. I’m sure good ones have been created, but I failed to find one.

Allowing my stylist to use the scissors on my hair with such gusto took courage. I had to take a leap of faith that this would look okay. But there was no guarantee that it would. I was taking a risk with my appearance that involved trusting someone to give me a haircut that I could live with. If it didn’t work out, at least I had a healthy hat collection.

The good news is that I’ve had my new hairstyle for four days and I think I like it. Short hair is easier to manage, and it feels light and airy. Freedom was a byproduct of this choice. The wind will never blow hair into my face again, and the time it takes to get ready for work has decreased. I feel free from the shackles of trying to tame my hair since this style looks better messed up. Post-haircut, I am happy that I went through with my plan.

In the grand scheme of things, haircuts are not the most significant of our life choices. Hair grows (some faster than others!) and can be spruced up with accessories or color changes, or it can be covered with a hat. I did not feel the need to pray about this decision, to ask God’s will for my hair. But there are many crossroads in our lives where one path seems riskier than the other, decisions that require courage and trust. Those are the moments as we weigh the pros and cons where we stop to pray. According to Jeremiah 29:11, God has a plan for each of us.

If I’m going to trust anyone to plan my life, it would be my Heavenly Father. Unlike me, He knows what the future will bring and how to prepare me for it.

Isn’t it fantastic that the Master Creator who placed the stars in the sky loves us and cares about every aspect of our lives? I quote this verse often on Val’s Stage because it’s one of my favorite promises:

When we know He has a plan and purpose for us, it is easier to trust God and surrender our will to Him. When we stand at that fork in the road, He will show us which choice to make—if we ask Him to. That requires courage and trust, and it also brings freedom. Allowing God to lead us takes the pressure off us for making the wrong choice. Instead, we move forward in faith that our Father knows best, and He will work things out according to His plan.

Have you surrendered your life to God? Facing all life’s choices without Him is risky. You can’t see the future. You don’t know what lies at the end of each path. How do you know which one to take?

God loves you, and He wants to lead you according to His plan. If you haven’t accepted Him into your heart, He waits for your invitation to have a personal relationship with Him. Revelation 3:20 assures us of this.

Why would you ever want to do life alone? Unlike a hairstyle choice, this is one decision you will never regret making.

Father, thank You for all of the blessings You have given me. Thank You for loving me enough to have a good plan for my life. I surrender my will to You and give You control. When I face decisions, show me which path You want me to take and help me follow it in obedience, trusting that You know what is best for me. Forgive me for the times I’ve forged ahead and left You out of decisions. Cleanse my heart as I repent of my sins and make space for You. I choose You, acknowledging that Your way is better than mine. Amen.

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