Live And Let Dye

Tie-dyed shirts have been around forever. Interest in making and wearing them cycles through generations like a reliable friend. Creativity comes in how and where you bunch the shirt and the color palette chosen.

There’s a little bit of hippy in all of us.

Isley, at seven, made a shirt with her bestie, Talia. Their shirts reflect their identities.

The fascinating aspect of dye is how you can change the look of an article of clothing with a small box of dye. The color on the box identifies what color an article will become.

People have been dying items for centuries. The first recorded use of dye was natural pigments mixed with water and oil for use on skin (yes, the original temporary tattoos), jewelry and fabric in 2600 B.C. It’s always been a useful and creative way to change the look of something, to improve the appearance with added color.

To dye is to identify. We choose to identify the who that we are with so much more than color.

We had the chance to visit Melody and Chris in D.C. and witness our granddaughter Sloane’s baptism. A sacred ceremony where church and family work together to help her understand and grow in her covenant relationship with Jesus. I became more aware of how this was an identification ceremony–identifying with Jesus and what He has done for us. This commitment colors the framework this little gal will have in life, one of faith, hope and love.

We all identify with something that is more than what we are. As Americans, people scramble to identify as Republicans and Democrats depending on their political bent. That identification has split our country quite a bit of late. Sports fans identify with their favorite teams by wearing jerseys or hats that honor team colors and names. Music fans identify with their favorite artists by their personal playlists. We’re identified by culture. You can even identify our favorite foods by how our breath smells or the stains on our clothes.

Some identities are more subtle. Our character is identified by how we treat others, how honorable and full of integrity we are, by how hard we work and how well we love.

Sloane was identified in her baptism by how her parents intend to raise her with a knowledge of Jesus. With an understanding of His grace and gift of forgiveness.

Does this mean, at fifteen months, she’ll act with respect, kindness and obedience? That she’ll honor her parents in all she does? That her life will reflect a wholeness that comes from knowing she’s made in the image of God?

If you think yes, whatever fifteen-month-old you know must be a mini Mother Teresa or future pope.

We grow into our identity as we grow in who we choose to be. Sloane’s baptism doesn’t make her good. It’s a commitment to help her grow into who she can be. Who God made her to be. It does color a hoped-for path.

Our identity doesn’t result just from our culture or preferences. From family, job or talent.

It’s how we show up in this life.

What’s the dye that identifies you?


3 responses to “Live And Let Dye”

  1. “You can even identify our favorite foods by how our breath smells or the stains on our clothes.” How true 😜 I laughed out loud.


    1. Sometimes you’ve just to scratch and sniff.

      Liked by 1 person

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