I’m Just Not a Gangster Hippy

By: Amy Dalke

Halloween is over, thank you very much.

If there is such thing as a Halloween Grinch, we are soul mates.

To be clear, my bad attitude about all this pumpkin-loving fanfare doesn’t have anything to do with Jesus. (Just in case you’re afraid I’m launching a discussion about “Jesus versus Trick-or-Treating.”)

I just don’t like the whole costume thing.

Dressing up is way too much work; the costumes are uncomfortable, and they never fit quite right.

Not to mention that my lack of homespun creativity always leads me to the shelves of Party City, where it seems the majority of “adult women” options involve fishnets and/or skirts that barely cover my backside.

So yeah…the dressing up part isn’t my favorite.

Mind you, I wouldn’t dress up at all, except my best friend LOVES Halloween. And she threw a party, because that’s how much she loves it.

Larry and I went to the party as hippies, because every costume store in the U.S. was sold out of blond JFK wigs.

The hippy thing wasn’t awkward at all, since an afro looked so natural on Larry, and I enjoy my own hair to be long and stringy and hang all crazy-like in my face. Or not.

This picture proves that I’m evidently some kind of gangster hippy. The first-ever flower child throwing down the peace with, “…yo-yo-what’s up”.

halloween party_2014

Larry didn’t feel the same annoying distress about his wild, hippy coiffure. He didn’t even need a bald sock for his wig to go on with ease. (And the bonus of having hair for the night led to the realization of why he’s always cold without it.)

(p.s. I have no idea what’s happening with his receding hairline in this picture.)

Overall, I discovered once again that dressing up as someone I’m not, is just a lot of work. And its uncomfortable. And it doesn’t fit well.

I wasn’t made to be a hippy. Not even close, lest the gangsta-style hand gestures had you going for a minute.

No one would call me an easygoing, free spirit, nor do I have the patience to grow long hair. Also we sometimes forget to recycle, which is surely the deal-breaker.

Now that Halloween is over, and I’m spared from playing dress-up for at least another year, I keep thinking about our human tendency to wear a different kind of costume.

The kind we put on to be accepted by others.

The costume we wear to hide our imperfections.

The props we grab onto: the trophies, the trinkets, the shiny things that somehow make us significant.

The plastic mold and labels we conform to…like Stepford-style Robots, or Have-It-All-Together Mom.

The plastic Christian mask we wear out of fear that we’ll be judged. (Because if they only knew about________, what in the world would they think?)

Here’s a little something you need to know:

No costume you put on will be as awesome as who you already are.

You are a living, breathing masterpiece of God. Even if you don’t feel like it, you are!

“For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.” Ephesians 2:10

As human beings, we were made in the image of God. And while our image-bearing identity was mangled by sin, it was restored in Christ.

There’s no need to hide behind a costume, or a fake smile, or a “perfected” image.

Despite our issues, our hang-ups, our addictions, and our pit-dwelling tendencies toward mess and drama, God has already accepted us in Christ.

“...to the praise of the glory of His grace, by which He made us accepted in the Beloved.” Ephesians 1:6 NKJV

If Jesus were to meet you for coffee this morning, you could feel free to totally act like yourself. He’s already accepted you. Picked you out for his own. 

The costume, the accessories, the mask, the props, and the plastic armor aren’t necessary in his presence. And the more time you spend with him, the more you realize you’re way better without them.

Because you are already awesome. Just the way you are.

What costume do you tend to grab?

Who are you trying to be…that doesn’t match who you really are?

By all means, go hang that up! And let every bite of Halloween candy be your reminder that God is crazy about you.


p.s. I’ll trade you our chocolate for your Smarties. Or Sour Patch Kids.