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A sharp dressed man

You’ve heard it said that “clothes make the man.” If that is true then I am an unmade man. Fash­ion and I have nev­er been friends although there have been times when I tried to warm up to it. In the past, I have enjoyed the feel of new and well made cloth­ing, but I rarely had any­thing that was very expen­sive, at least by world­ly stan­dards. What­ev­er attempt I made to be fash­ion­able, I sim­ply could not sus­tain any momen­tum. The rule of my child­hood was to look my best with what I had and if my cloth­ing was poor, that did not excuse me to live shab­bi­ly, my clothes dirty or wrinkled.

For me, its not much of a con­cern any­more. Besides the fact that I am get­ting old­er and my eye­sight is fad­ing, I am an Ortho­dox priest. My ensem­ble is either black or grey. This saves a lot of time and mon­ey, and the deci­sion mak­ing process is quite sim­ple. Of course, I don’t wear my cas­sock all the time, but my oth­er clothes are far from GQ.

I do believe that Chris­tians shouldn’t be both­ered with the fash­ions of the world. This doesn’t mean that we have to live in sack­cloth or go about bare­foot­ed, but we shouldn’t be dom­i­nat­ed by the rules of fash­ion of this present age. How­ev­er, we should be sharply dressed, and St. Paul is our best con­sul­tant. He has a wardrobe picked out for you and if you put it on, you will stand out from all the rest.

Put on ten­der mer­cy and kind­ness. Since we will know mer­cy in the same man­ner that we have shown it, we should show mer­cy with ten­der­ness. Kind­ness is a beau­ti­ful gar­ment for a heart to wear. A kind per­son com­mits ran­dom acts of kind­ness, with­out some hid­den plan or agen­da. It is just who they are and it is just what they do.

Put on humil­i­ty and meek­ness. These are most unusu­al gar­ments in these proud and boast­ful days. If it is true that the meek will inher­it the earth, then there are very few who will inher­it anything .

Put on long-suf­fer­ing. No one has any patience any­more. We run at the first sign of trou­ble, or we don’t hang in for very long. A per­son who wears long-suf­fer­ing is a rare soul indeed.

There is one arti­cle that binds all the pieces togeth­er and makes you a sharp dressed man or woman.

Put on love which is the bond of per­fec­tion. Love is like a belt and with­out it, all the oth­er pieces fall away. This shouldn’t sur­prise us since it is love that makes us mer­ci­ful and kind; it is love that slays our ego so that we might have humil­i­ty and meek­ness; it is love that helps us to keep on going even when the way before us is uncertain.

These gar­ments- ten­der­ness, mer­cy, kind­ness, humil­i­ty, meek­ness and love- make you look just like Jesus. This is a most unusu­al style and you won’t find it on the cloth­ing run­ways of Paris.

Yes, Chris­tians should be sharply dressed. Sad­ly I think I look pret­ty good when in fact, I dress in dirty rags.

My moth­er would be ashamed of me.

Colos­sians 3.12−14 KJV

Fr. John Moses