Maybe Holy

In the midst of condemning cross-dressing (22:5) and incest (22:30), the laws of Deuteronomy give us a seemingly random, yet simple command: “Make tassels on the four corners of the outer garment you wear” (Deut 22:12).

That’s it.

There is no further explanation; no reason is given. Just to do it.

So: what if we did? What if we took the laws given to us and followed them, blindly without question? Instead of trying to decide why such random laws are given to us, what would happen if we just did it?

Imagine taking an afternoon to christen your new coat, your new jacket, your new hoodie with four tassels one for each corner. During that time your mind might wander anywhere – or it might question why you’re enacting upon such a seemingly silly request. Tassels are not the in fashion.

When you’re done you sigh a breath of relief. It was painless and your outer garment now looks much more personalized. Maybe you even smile at having obeyed. Child-like faith feels good, doesn’t it?

And then maybe as you wear your garment around, you find yourself enjoying the questions. People inquire about your newfound fashion statement; but it doesn’t embarrass you. Instead, it opens up a chance to share about obedience to an Almighty God.

Or maybe you find your handle playing with the tassels, your fingers always seem to get lost in the strands of corded fabric. You remember one day why those tassels are there – because God asked you to put them there and you obeyed.

And every time you wear that outer garment, you’re reminded – if you could be obedient to God in sewing tassels for a whole afternoon, you can be obedient to avoid sexual temptation for the moments that cutie walks by in far too little clothing (maybe they need an outer garment too). You hands find the tassels, a physical reminder of God’s presences in all things of your life.

Maybe a simple, random law, one that you didn’t understand, changes your life. Maybe a whole race follows this law and it becomes the Jewish prayer shawl. Maybe you realize that it’s not the object that is holy, but the meanings behind things. Maybe you see that an afternoon spent obeying a silly little verse can change your life.

Or maybe you just think these little laws are meaningless; what could ever be holy about a cloak?

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