Friday, March 16, 2007

Oh, a ramble.

Well, I guess I'm going to just use this post to get all of my feelings out. I think I might have mentioned before on this blog that I tend to let it all pour out when I write in these kinds of things - it's a bit of a release, you know? So, here it goes!!!

Firstly, I've been looking up/reading up lately about how Christians should view body piercings and tattoos, and body modification altogether. I have always been interested in the subject, from a very young age, and I have always wanted a few extra holes in my body :P. Two years ago (wow, has it really been that long??) I had my tragus pierced (you know, that useless flap of ear cartilage near the "front" of your ear?), and I really enjoy the appearance of it. I wouldn't say it is a vanity thing, rather an ornament, like a watch or a necklace, or heck, normal old earlobe piercings. However, I've been interested in getting my eyebrow pierced for quite a few years now, on and off. Nothing huge, no big thick flashy ring, something tiny and discreet.

This is where the problem comes in. It seems that there is a huge divide within the body of believers on the issue of piercings, specifically when they are no longer solely on the ear. Many people will refer to a verse in Leviticus (chapter nineteen, I believe, I will "biblegateway" it later!) that basically states that none of God's chosen people should make markings or cuttings on the skin, as the pagans do. This is very reasonable. However, I am torn as to the relevancy of this passage under the New Covenant, as this verse is nestled in with many other O.T. commands such as those requiring men to not trim the corners of their beards, and for no one to wear clothing made of mixed fibres (and I really love my polyester blend disco pants!!! ha-ha.). So this verse is kind of in that weird limbo-land that O.T. commands go into when we consider the New Testament, and how Jesus came in part to free us from the restraints of the law. I realize though that this does NOT mean "Woooo hoooo, we can do whatever we want!!!" But, as one commentator said on the subject, (this is not a direct quote!) "I really do not think that God would care if you have a piece of metal through your nose".

This rings both true and false for me. On one hand, I truly don't think it matters in the long run if you consider it from a purely objective viewpoint. It is just a piece of stainless steel, or titanium, or whathave you. It has no bearing on your standing with God. However, on the other hand, the Bible tells us that whatever we do, we should do it for the glory of God, and also that our actions should never cause another believer to stumble. This is what puts up a barrier to me. What if that teensy bit of metal causes a brother or sister to question my intentions, or causes them to falter? I really would regret it if such a thing happened; my stomach is aching just thinking about it.

I also question my own motives. Am I doing this to have people look at me? To admire me, to improve my appearance? I'd like to say no, but I truly do like to think that a little ornamentation might spice up my appearance, at least to myself. I would like the feeling that it gave me. Mixed in with that, too, is a thought I have been pondering on for the last few days - I actually think that a visible piercing like this would allow me to relate to non-Christians on a new level. Maybe it would cause them to wonder if Christians aren't the stuck-up, goody two-shoes they always thought they were. Maybe they are just normal people?? I also have the feeling that this piercing would give me a bit more confidence in myself, and allow me to share the gospel more freely as a result. I remember the little boost the ol' tragus gave me, and I feel that that another piercing would have the same effect.

But, there is another worry on my mind. WHAT will people think?? I know it is sort of a silly thing to think about. But I worry that maybe potential husbands will be turned off by my tiny little barbell, or that all the old people I know will suddenly shun me. Will my grandma refuse to kiss me? Will old Mr. Laplant pretend he doesn't know who I am? I don't think I've blogged about this before, but I am very afraid of rejection, and this would wound me very deeply. Not even just possible suitors and the elderly, but what if some of my friends begin to act strangely around me? I also think about camp, and what their response would be - not that I've even been accepted yet (or will be).

All these fears and stresses over a piece of metal and a hunk of hairy forehead skin :S !!!!

It's all so confusing. I'm wondering if anyone is reading this - if you are, and you have any input at all, please comment. I won't think you're a creeper, I promise.

One last thing, the Bible also talks about our bodies being a temple of the Holy Spirit. This means that we are supposed to keep them healthy and ready for service. I don't really think that an eyebrow piercing would hinder this great responsibility (unless I developed some kind of horrendous infection ?!?!), but rather, as I read in one person's opinion, as hanging up some sparkly Christmas lights up around the corners :)

I'll keep praying about it. Sorry about the immense ramble-o-saurus I've created.