Gone are the days of slathering baby oil on my skin, baking for six hours, and returning home with “a healthy burn.” My tan will be short-lived but it looks pretty good for a day or so.
Healthy Glow means my very white face looks a tad less pasty, and yet I still rubbed a little color into my cheeks on vacation. Why not? The contrast between bronzed and more bronzed defines my cheekbones. And who doesn’t long for defined cheekbones?
I am a minimal makeup wearer. (Is that why I’ve never served a large steeple church? Apparently Proctor and Gamble would say yes.)
I once had a parishioner ask me if I “didn’t wear makeup” for theological reasons. “You are so brave,” she said, “not to conform to the pressure of wearing mascara.” Apparently some of us feel pressured to wear mascara?
The truth is that I actually do wear makeup but apparently it looks “natural.” I have allergies which make mascara a terrible idea. I try to remember to wear lipstick, but it comes off when I sip water all day. Whatever.
Personal appearance is A Big Part of success in this world. A healthy glow helps land the job.
Many Pastor Nominating Committees consider appearance when seeking their next clergy person. Clergywomen in particular can’t be too good-looking of course. Healthy, yes. Glamorous, no. And confident, spiritually solid PNCs will call the best leader, regardless of appearance.
But mostly, I hope our Pastor Search Committees seek servants with a healthy glow. To be honest, all of us worth our salt are broken/have experienced brokenness. A large percentage of pastors take anti-depressants.
I want a spiritual leader with a healthy glow, but my hope is that the glow comes something extraordinary and holy. The best pastors I know have a resilience that comes from having a strong spiritual core. They trust in Something bigger than themselves. They do not make ministry about themselves.
Maybe our pastors struggles with an array of imperfections. But they know how to use even those imperfections for good.
What we need are pastors with a healthy glow.