The first costume that I ever remember designing and wearing myself was when I was seven years old. I thought and planned, cut it out, painted it with black and glitter, wrote the words carefully, and wore it proudly for Halloween. I was a Holy Bible. I was something else, let me tell you. I mean, who does that? It was my own idea, not from my mother or father, and my sister did not have such an impression on me then as later. And so, I as a seven year old girl, trick-or-treated as a Bible. Props to my parents who let me do it.
Well, why not, really, if we are going to say that we need to evangelize, why not go from house to house bearing the word of God, literally? We can then do it clearly, openly, and living in the full truth of the gospel we bear. Just imagine if we all wore the word of God so openly that one could see it from a distance. We could approach from far off and have everyone know where we stood on how powerful the Word itself truly is. What would the world do with such a clear and open presence of the word in our communities? How would it change us if we knew that everyone could see what we were bearing? How would it change our reactions? How would it change our relationships? What would we bear?
Since I was seven, I have changed a bit, I was never a Bible for Halloween again. I was a professor of Hebrew studies my first year at divinity school, but it is not quite the same thing. I am still that same awkward child with a painted cardboard box resting on her shoulders. Only now the weight has shifted and changed. Now I am bearing the word itself, not a crude construction of a representation. And so now I must bear witness to the word living in me, not only in visiting those around me, but in my life as others watch me. Because everyone sees the way you live. So live so that everyone sees the Word in you, not the fake cardboard box.