So in our traditional service I wear an alb. I chose one with a hood, because it reminded me of the timeless classic film “American Werewolf in Paris.” You know…where they pull the hood over their faces and then turn into werewolves and then eat the tourists. No? Doesn’t ring a bell?
Anyway, the alb has a rope that you are supposed to tie around your waist in what is called a cincture knot. BIG debate on the correctness of that one, let me tell you. I just followed some Roman Catholic website on how to do it, but it appears that the Protestant Reformation has touched the far reaches of the galaxy. Alas I did it wrong.
The problem, however, was not the knot (ha!). The rope, which was intelligently designed to be overpriced, has begun to become undone. This annoyingly modest phylactery is down to three loose cords dangling from my hip.
What I didn’t know until reading my devotions this morning is that this frayed knot has biblical and theological significance. This rope represents my uncovering…my exposure. It reveals who I am down to the core, untouched by the gracious hand of God.
I am frayed.
I am undone.
What will the Lord do with such as I am in His perfect presence?
Woe to me, for I am undone!
Because I am a man of unclean lips,
And I live among a people of unclean lips;
For my eyes have seen the King,
The Lord of hosts. (Isaiah 6:5)
Boa, K. (1993). Handbook to prayer: Praying scripture back to God. Atlanta: Trinity House.