It's been a long time since my first post on contentment. Maybe I've been more content since then...but probably not. What go me thinking about it today was a haircut appointment. You see, I've never been totally satisfied with my hair (well, maybe once). It is fine and limp and doesn't always do what I want it to do. I keep trying new stylists and new 'dos in an attempt to find that elusive "perfect style". Now, this is not something that consumes me. I rarely go for a haircut more than every two months and I'm usually willing to just live with it. I just wish it could be better.
What does this say about my contentment with my looks? I'm not entirely sure yet. But it does make me more cautious in my judgments of other people who are in pursuit of some physical "ideal". I used to consider plastic surgery an affront to the Creator. He made us the way we are and He didn't make all of us the same. To change one's face or body in an artificial way seemed to say what God made wasn't good enough. My old views would allow for exceptions on the basis of physical pain/discomfort and disfigurations, but that was it.
Like I say, now I'm not so sure. What made me change my mind? I colored my hair. I fell prey to cultural norms that say graying women are in their fifties or sixties. I wasn't content with letting nature follow it's own course because it seemed a bit premature. Here is the shocking discovery I made when I decided to use a color a few shades lighter than my naturally very dark brown:I looked better. People were complementing me all the time on my hair and only half of them realized the improvement was due to the color not the cut. Even men who aren't prone to giving complements were praising my hair. Weird!
So I had to rethink things. Would God have made me in a way that was less than ideal? Yes, I think that is a very real possibility. People are born every day missing limbs, having debilitating deformities and other physical traits that set them apart from the "norm". Are they less touched by the Creator? I would say not. Then is it okay to seek to improve oneself physically? And to what extent? Does this relate to our ability to be content in every circumstance?
"Gray hair is a crown of splendor; it is attained by a righteous life."