Some of you know that of all the colors in the world the pigment that I like least is pink; and that may be an understatement. Upon learning this some people have taken great delight in “pinking” me. I once arrived at my office to discover that I had been anonymously gifted a complete ceramic nativity set - each figurine painted pink and dusted with pearlescent glitter. Not wanting to offend the unknown donor, each Advent it was displayed on the bookcase near the door. That is until someone confessed to having bought it at rummage sale and spray painted it just to annoy me. I’ve been given too many pink shirts (gift receipt enclosed only once) to count. And there are always bulletins or letters printed on pink paper because “It’s all we have left.” (Whether you believe it or not mauve and fuchsia are just other names for pink.)
My dislike of pink goes back to first or second grade. As an only child I never had to wear hand-me-downs. However, one year I did receive some out grown clothes from distant cousins. They included a pink dress shirt and a pair of dark slacks, both a size too big. The only way I could keep the pants up was with a pair of suspenders which my friends took great delight in snapping. The solution was to wear the suspenders under the pink shirt, but that complicated tucking the shirt into my pants. Now instead of snapping the suspenders my friends just yanked my shirt tail out. I detested that pink shirt. I never deliberately chose to wear it. Too many times I heard, “Go change your shirt. Put on that nice pink shirt your cousin gave you.” Now that I determine what clothes hang in my closet be assured there are no pink garments among them.
Growing up I also wore attitudes, behavior, beliefs, and responses that were handed down — received from adults and other role models in my life. Some were good and acceptable; others were not. As I have developed emotionally and spiritually I’ve discovered soiled, broken, and destructive behavior, beliefs, and attitudes that have had to be tossed and replaced. My reaction and response to people can be rooted in deep seated hand me downs. I have had to ask for forgiveness, strength, and grace to put aside hurtful attitudes, speech, and actions. It has taken divine grace to put on the bright clothing of faith and love.
I Samuel 16:7 states, “the Lord said “Have no regard for outward appearance or stature…. God doesn’t look at things like humans do. Humans see only what is visible to the eyes, but the Lord sees into the heart.”
The next time you’re at your favorite coffee shop buy a stranger a cup of coffee.
In grace and peace, Larry Lundgren