When Annike's hair starts getting fluffy, we know it is time for her to get a bath.
I have to admit that we are rather lax in the bathing department, and usually bathe her when we can't remember the last time she had a bath, or her hair starts getting big. Kids don't really smell the same way that adults do when they don't shower.
I am pretty sure I only took a bath once a week all through my childhood, and I turned out just fine. Bath night for us was the night before church, and that did not change until I entered Junior High. This is probably because Junior High is the age when kids start to smell.
Christian would still like to bathe once a week if he could get away with it.
I love polling people about their bath habits with their children because everyone does it a little differently. Most Americans are daily bath givers, but the rest of the world doesn't do it that way. You might expect underdeveloped countries to downplay the importance of the bath because of water issues or an underdeveloped understanding of hygiene. But most European countries have plenty of water, an excellent understanding of health, and are not particularly regular in the area of bathing. Does it matter in the long run?
|Post-bath warm-up by the fire, complete with munching on an apple.|
If only we were as compulsive about giving our hearts a cleansing as we are about our bodies. The Bible makes it pretty clear that we are made clean through matters of the heart and not our external appearance. Maybe a more appropriate poll to take would be to ask how often people sincerely work at scrubbing clean the dirty areas of their insides. Or how regular people are at preventing a build-up of the filth that clutters the heart... things like bitterness, lack of forgiveness, judgement, slander, hatred, arrogance, jealousy,... among other ugliness that can easily go unnoticed by others, but gradually corrodes away our internal beauty.
Fortunately, we don't have to choose between external and internal cleanliness. We can have both! So what's my excuse for keeping an irregular bath schedule? Well, let's just say we are hoping Annike recognizes that greater emphasis is being put on developing her sense of internal cleanliness.
"But the LORD said to Samuel, 'Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The Lord does not look at the things man looks at. Man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.'" 1 Samuel 16:7