I think I’ve been brainwashed.
The unexpected thought pierced my sleepy fog. Although after midnight, we girls were dragged from our sleeping bags for a special lecture. Clumped together on a couple of couches, we yawned and tried to listen. I was sadly aware that my alarm was going off in less than six hours. Prayer meeting started at 6:30 a.m., and if I wanted to appear spiritual I needed to be there. This meant getting up even earlier to shower, blow dry and curl my hair—because for some reason curly hair was also a sign of spirituality.
Quiet submission didn’t come naturally.
Mrs. W droned on and on about cliques and friendship, and I felt myself drifting off. Then she said it—the real reason this meeting had been called: “It just grieved my heart, to look out the window yesterday and see you all playing in the snow. I couldn’t tell who the boys were and who the girls were since you were all wearing snow pants.” Her voice dripped of judgmental disappointment. Yes, at this winter youth retreat we were all wearing snow pants to play in the snow. It was horrifying. Especially because in previous years most of us girls — at least the godly ones — had worn skirts or culottes over our snow pants. (Read the rest of my story of rejecting shame and embracing my strength over at The Mudroom Blog today!)