Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Exotic (08/08/13)
TITLE: It's Just the Gypsy in My Soul . . .
By Judith Gayle Smith
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Our feisty little paternal Hungarian Gram fueled my sis’s wildfire. Gram, stretching to barely five feet tall, gold tooth piratically gleaming in the heart of her reluctant, infrequent smile, spoke seven languages fluently. She was brown as a walnut from living in her magnificent gardens. She was either born of the Aristocracy, or was an outrageous Gypsy. Methinks we lean closer to the Gypsy with our love of the exotic enshrined in beautiful gemstones.
Brings to mind the lovely Hollywood Hungarians – remember the Gabor Sisters? Who could outshine Zsa Zsa?
My colorful, virtually unstoppable sister daily creates high drama with natural uncut stones. I prefer faceted crystals, freshwater pearls, rhinestones, glowing opals . . .
Is Barb the gypsy, and I the Aristocrat? Nah. I tongue twist English, lacking the exquisite calm demeanor of royalty . . .
Barb dresses like the colorful` brilliant gypsy she is. I prefer velvet, dramatically displaying stunning royal blues,, purples, reds . . .
At seventy-one, Barb layers patterns mixed with wilder patterns, and prefers the leopard tennis shoes a friend gave us. At seventy, I slink in striking leopard. I wear a leopard hat, leopard dress shoes and a leopard sarong swim dress.
Does this justify people gleefully insisting we are exotic, colorful, wild? Yup. I have an excuse, being singularly blessed with a Histrionic Personality. A gypsy.
I wear my thick wavy hair long, softly falling over my velvet-clad shoulders with an eye covering part, ala an aging disheveled Veronica Lake. Barb wears her long soft baby-fine beautiful hair in a crunch atop her head – remember Mammy Yokum? Where do we get our stylish ways?
Our mom was a cats-eye green, naturally wavy ash-black haired beauty. Yes, like a gypsy. She was once told that she looked like a Sephardic Jewess – a rare and wonderful compliment to her loveliness. Her eyes slanted – well, a gypsy.
What makes a gypsy? What desires and spirit drives someone to travel in caravans, dance and sing madly, and jingle their bangles?
Today’s gypsies caravan, not in romantically fantasized wildly painted carriages, but in gorgeous motor homes with all the advantages. No longer do they woo with jingling bells, dancing artistry or sweet beggings. Sigh.
Strange, unfamiliar and exotic members people the Body of the Christ. Colorful, exciting, gregarious, highly volatile are gypsies. Not to say that all else are boring, drab, quiet and somber. These qualities are also beloved in the Christ. The spectacular eyelashes fringing “the windows of the soul” are not more important than the humble toenail.
I gape open-mouthed, stupefied by the exquisite Peacock – an explosion of riotous exotic colors. But he is humbled by a wee blue Parakeet trained to call “praise the Lord”.
Parading in breathtaking finery impress some and humble others into their sheltering shells. Some of us peeking from our shells may have more heart to offer to our Lord. What is important is that God is glorified, not us. Words paint glorious colors, but humility eclipses them all.
Yes, this aristocratic gypsy parades in bright colors and leopard prints. This does not and should not be all that people see and think of me. The Bible that quietly sits beside me as I bead speaks louder than my getup.
When I first became enamored of our Lord and Savior, Jesus, the Christ – I decided to humble my then even more flamboyant appearance. I stopped wearing makeup, dressed in long dark dresses, twisted my unruly hair into an unbecoming bun.
Was I glorifying God or my rebellious idea of what humility meant? The outward appearance is important, but when you use it to shame others into your concept of religious ardor – that is so wrong.
We are His. Hallelujah. Praise Him. Who reigns over the showy Peacock and the humble brown wren? We are all to glorify Him, and we must learn the gifts He gives us to so do.
This bordering on elderly, colorful, wannabe Peacock, still quite the exotic gypsy – winsomely preens her bustling feathers down so she can snuggle into our Father’s comforting Arms. She has tooted the horn of the exotic long enough
An afterthought – be warned that concentrated love of beautiful things, even and especially gorgeous gems, border not on the exotic, but on outright idol worship. Just saying . . .
KJV Proverbs 3:15, KJV Proverbs 20:15, KJV Proverbs 11:22, KJV Ezekiel 16:11-13, KJV Job 28:18
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