26 February 2011
Do you have a friend who has a “signature accessory”? You know, that one piece of “umph” that they ALWAYS have to spice up an outfit. One of my girlfriends is known for her shoe collection (ok, I have a LOT of friends who fit into this category); another for her big, blingy jewelry; another for her hats; another who doesn’t step out of her house (not even to go to the gym or grocery store) unless her face is perfectly made up – fake long eyelashes and all. And don’t get it twisted, guys can have signature accessories as well. I had a male friend who was known for his braces (not to be confused with suspenders – I’ll never forget the lecture I received when I once commented “Nice suspenders” – oy vey!) – and several who are now known for their bowties every Sabbath. My brother, for years, did not leave the house without his “Gilligan” cap – you know, Gilligan from Gilligan’s Island…this may be before some of my younger friends’ time, but Gilligan’s Island used to be the show! And my mother, won’t leave the house unless her watch is a match – either in color scheme or whatever else suits her fancy. Brooches, tie pins, hats, watches, wigs – all ways we express ourselves creatively in our dress.
For a while, my “signature” was my locs. Six years of people commenting on my locs – whether they liked them, loved them or hated them – they ALWAYS got comments. Then, for a while, it was my vast shoe collection. Since messing up my knee last October, my shoes have languished in their plastic shoe boxes until such time that I can fully enjoy them again.
Now, it seems, my signature accessories are scarves. I have them in every color, texture, weight, size, length – you pull out an outfit, I probably have a scarf that will complement it. Today, my love of scarves tends to be in the “outerwear” arena – something I can throw on, but just as easily take off. (As opposed to a scarf that is truly a part of an outfit and cannot be removed without changing the whole look and effect of what you are wearing). My love for scarves began years ago because of my admiration of an elder in my church who ALWAYS had a perfectly knotted and tied scarf to accent her suit or dress. There were several Sabbaths when I would show up to church, scarf in hand, and she would hook a sista up! And she never complained about it – just looked at me, looked at the scarf and tied it in an elaborate, beautiful bow that would get me complimented for the rest of the day. Thanks, Elder Ruff!
But there is a much more important accessory that we should strive to carry everywhere we go, and that is the character of Christ. Wouldn’t you like to be known as the person who is ALWAYS magnifying the Lord through words and actions and deeds? That when people came into your presence they would KNOW the love of God through their interaction with you? I searched the Bible for a text that spoke to what I am trying to say EXACTLY without success, but Isaiah 61:10 comes close: I will greatly rejoice in the LORD, my soul shall be joyful in my God; for he hath clothed me with the garments of salvation, he hath covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decketh himself with ornaments, and as a bride adorneth herself with her jewels. If that is what being clothed by the Father can do, what need do we have of any other accessory?
As you get dressed each day and prepare to meet the world, whether you slap on a Gilligan hat, or tie a scarf around your neck, or make sure that brooch sets off the colors in your clothing…make sure you put on the character of Christ as you face the world. Let THAT be your signature accessory. What do you say?
© 2011 Kristina E. Smith
Sabbath, 26 February 2011