This article is part of a series looking at Finding the Fear of God and how we have perhaps become too familiar with Him. Please click here to read the introductory article and to find links to other articles in the series.
I have spent the last month with a scarf close at hand and attempting to cover my head each time I pray. My hope was to feel more reverential and in awe of God, but I’m afraid I can’t report much change in my overall view of Him. Thanks to our ongoing survey (please click here to complete it), I know that around 80% of my readers would like to increase their fear and reverence toward God, yet less than half would be willing to try covering their heads when praying to Him. Perhaps they could foresee the futility of doing this; however, in certain situations, I discovered some benefits to doing so.
An initial difference
I chose to place a scarf over my head when I prayed rather than a hat, and initially, I felt it made a difference. Immediately I felt more humble; I sat up straighter and would put my feet down on the floor. It was as if an important person had joined me for my prayer time, so that was positive. The scarf gave me tunnel vision, and for a few fleeting seconds, it allowed me to focus more on God. It was as if we were together in a cave or a quiet, safe place. However, I soon forgot that there was a scarf on my head, and then there was no effect at all. I also discovered that I talk to God a lot during the day, and it was impossible to place the scarf on my head every time I did this.
Though I felt meeker with the scarf on, it didn’t make God seem any more incredible to me. And, when in a group, I felt self-conscious putting the scarf over my head; it became a distraction. I live in Nepal, and this occurred even when I prayed with other women who regularly cover up to pray. They simply didn’t expect a foreigner to do the same as them, so it became an interruption when I joined them in this action.
There was one significant benefit to covering up with a scarf to pray. This was the solidarity I felt with other women worldwide who have to wear scarves and cover-up within their cultures. I gained an insight into how it diminished them and was a burden to wear, especially when it was hot. By covering your head, you are doing what countless women worldwide have to do when they pray or go about their everyday lives. I highly recommend this practice for anyone interested in praying for women in Asia or persecuted Christians. All you need is a scarf, and there’s no downside. Why not give it a try?
Please click here to return to the Finding the Fear series of articles.
DislocatedChristians exists to create and support a community of like-minded people. My prayer is that you’ll find some echoes of your questions about international church and culture in these pieces, and it will encourage you to know others have the same thoughts. Please like, comment on or share my articles if you’ve found them helpful. I’d be immensely grateful if you could follow me; please enter your details here.
If you’d like to support my writing, please consider buying one of my books.
Just as we are each a work in progress, so too is DislocatedChristians. Sometimes I’ll get things wrong, and I hope you’ll forgive me and continue to stick around when that happens.