What cha gonna wear? The art of dressing for lasting impact.

Magazines, pinterest and the fashion bloggers inform us about the latest trends. They’ll advise on appropriate attire for any occasion. They talk about pairings from a handbag selection to which sunglasses to wear and then a suggested nail polish color to complete “the look.”

The way a person adorns themselves reflects their personality and makes a statement. I like dressing and adornments. It is such an art form. I enjoy selecting outfits because garments have a setting, a reason and a purpose to fulfill. Hmm? What cha gonna wear?  Decorating myself, reflecting my mood and representing my personality is enjoyable. It does, however make packing for a trip difficult.

As I begin the packing process, an inner dialogue begins. Will I need this? Should I bring that? Oh, here’s my favorite jacket! Should I stick it in the bag too? Ugh! There’s not enough room for it. Go put that away. No! Rachel, you’ll only need a sweatshirt. True! Then I debate with myself…But what if that one smells like a bon-fire?

Weather conditions must also be considered. Well, what if it rains? Will it be cold? It might be. Oh, Boy! So I’ll include the long-sleeved shirt.  I better pack more suits, I don’t want to wear the same one everyday! After this mental gymnastics, half of my clothes lie on the bedroom floor in neat little hopeful stacks.

I hear them cry out, “Take me, take me!” 

“Over here! Hey, I want to go along!” they seem to beg me to pack them.

I gaze at the piles and touch each stack one more time to help determine the final cut. I feel badly, as I put viable options back in the closet. I wonder, Hmm? Is this the way a great coach feels as he decides, out of all these great players, which members get picked for the team.

We have a trip to a lake coming up soon. I’ve already packed. Otherwise, I’ll continue to add to the selection. As it is, my suitcase is FULL.

As I stuffed my bag I heard, remember to include clothes for:

  • sleeping.
  • lounging
  • walking
  • going into town
  • candy store outings
  • boating
  • riding the go cart
  • riding the jet ski
  • dining out
  • thrifting
  • biking
  • pontoon rides
  • toasting marshmallows by the campfire
  • bowling



This shindig held in Minnesota’s northern woods, is such an intensely relational and rich week.  It’s a wonderful highlight of the summer! For over twenty years I have attended this gathering. So needless to say, I’ve selected clothing and packed a time or two. However, whenever I’ve spent time with these life-long friends, I cannot remember what anyone has worn. It’s like I have apparel and fashion amnesia, a complete memory wipe! (until I found these photos)


What sticks in my mind… What I do remember, however, is the way they acted and treated each other. I do have a pretty clear recollection and an overall sense of how I feel while being around each person. I have vivid memories of compassion shown, support given, laughter shared and community tears flowing.

I’ve witnessed sweet kindnesses and been a grateful recipient of tender compassion and true empathy. We’ve played and prayed together. We’ve worshipped God and sung to Him with thankful hearts. These memories have made a lasting impact on how I remember these weeks. It’s probably why it’s a highlight of my summer.

Back to what to wear…Yes, there is a reason to wear semi-nice, lounging and athletic clothes. These things do make it into my suitcase. I am praying that I won’t be concerned about my clothes-what I bring or forget to bring. Instead, as I head to the cabin I’ll ask myself, will I be able to wear the “outfits” that Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God has instructed me to wear?

Why should I wear these things? I wear them because I am raised with Christ, seated with him in the heavens. I put them on because I’m hidden with Christ and one of God’s chosen people. I’m dearly loved and no longer an earthly creature.

Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.
Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts. And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.
Colossians 3:12-17
So let me ask you…“What cha gonna wear?” What was the person wearing who lately made an impact on you? Oh, no, just let me guess… They were probably clothed with:
  • compassion
  • kindness
  • humility
  • gentleness
  • patience
  • forgiveness
  • love
  • thankfulness
  • good instruction
  • calling others up
  • wisdom
  • gladness

When clothed in these things there is lasting impact. So let me ask you- “What cha gonna wear?”





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