Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "Jesus Calls Us"1 (Lyrics)
Matthew 10:29-31 – Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from the will of your Father. And even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. So don't be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows. (NIV)
Luke 12:6-7 – Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? Yet not one of them is forgotten by God. Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Don't be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows. (NIV)
It is beyond my comprehension to think that God could possibly number the hairs on my head – as few as they may be — but even more so, when we consider the number of people in this world.
In their book Revealed, Alex and Stephen Kendrick estimate that the Scripture quotations mean that God knows 7.66 quadrillion hairs! Wow!
As individuals, however, we are all sensitive to our hair. Some of us colour it differently. Some trim or shape it in a particular way, but most want their hair "done" regularly. Rosa is the beloved hairdresser who comes to our facility. During the height of the pandemic, it was upsetting to most people that access to hairdressers was limited. Our General Manager said that the most frequent query that he received was "When is Rosa returning?"
On March 27, 2022, I learned of a condition called alopecia. Apparently, this ailment causes hair to fall out. At the Oscar presentations that night, the presenter, Chris Rock, attempted to make a "joke" about actor Will Smith's wife, Jada Pinkett, who suffers from alopecia and is bald. Will went onstage and struck Chris in the face, and the news coverage of that hit even exceeded the coverage of the war in Ukraine!
As I pondered all of this talk about hair, two lessons came to me about this tiny thing called hair.
First, while one strand by itself is easily broken, it is amazing how strong hairs woven together can become. Think of how the strands of hair are braided together in various shapes and sizes but are always much stronger than when they are single strands. I think that this a good example of how much stronger we are together. I am fortunate to live in a facility where the staff all operate on a kind, helpful basis that gives strength to our entire "home". In our church settings and in our families, we are always stronger together.
The second lesson comes from the fact that although I am not an expert on hair styling, if I notice that a resident has recently visited Rosa, I try to make a positive comment on the new hairdo. It always brings a smile — a compliment is a tiny thing indeed, but meaningful. What I realized is that God can take even our smallest actions, that seem no more than a single strand of hair, to make a big difference.
Prayer: Dear Father, we don't understand how You know and love us all, but we are thankful that You do. Help us, in turn, to share Your lovingkindness with others. In the name of Jesus, we pray. Amen.