Bad Date #1113

Judge for yourselves: Is it proper for a woman to pray to God with her head uncovered? – 1 Corinthians 11:13
bible
To be honest I had given little to no thought about this passage before the night I went on a date with a man that boldly brought it to my attention. You see, the way I was raised all the beginning scriptures in Isaiah 11 on the propriety of worship were important for historical reasons but 1 Corinthians 11:15 allows that long hair was given to the women as a covering. However, I met a man and he asked me on a date (which I accepted) and I began to understand that not everyone has the same understanding of the scripture and the way it applies to modern life as I did.

We had settled into the table at the classy restaurant we went to and during the beginning drinks and after we had ordered we just made small talk, the beginning conversation primarily focused on getting to know each other better. We had met in the spiritual section of a bookstore a couple weeks ago and after sharing some light conversation about things we’d read and the things we hoped to read we agreed to meet for dinner sometime in the future. Now the future had become the present and as soon as the date began I quickly began to wish the present would become the past.

The food arrived and after we did the typical rubbing our hands together and making the excited look at one another in anticipation of the food arriving on our table I placed my hands across the table in my opening invitation to pray. As soon as I did he looked at my hands like they had sprouted a menagerie of pus-filled warts within the seconds it took me to place my hands upside on the table. I looked in alarm at my hands and then with confusion back up to his face trying to understand what the problem would be.

“Do you not pray?” I guessed. This surprised me because we’d talked so much about our spiritual beliefs and although we didn’t go to the same church we did go to neighboring Christian churches in Brooklyn.

“No, it’s not that. I just don’t pray with women who have uncovered heads.”

I pulled my hands back and patted my bare head as I had removed my winter hat when I came in out of the cold into the warm body of the restaurant. I shrugged and folded my hands into themselves bowing my head to pray over my own food. Although I thought it to be a little weird and it definitely caught me off guard I was willing to chalk it up as a quirk and continue with the date. Unfortunately he wasn’t.

Naturally, he waited until I had finished praying and prayed over his own food. Once he whispered his Amen he looked at me and asked me if I understood why he couldn’t pray with me. I shrugged in a dismissive way and he went on to quote from 1 Corinthians 11 about the importance of propriety in worship. Not being as well versed or educated in the scripture as he so obviously was I listened to him openly and then told him I would have to look into that more closely before I could really present an argument.

He nodded and looked down at his hands deep in thought. When he emerged and decided to present his thought he began with,

“While we’re on the subject of things women do I have to ask you if you have remained clean for your husband.”

I almost choked on my catfish and swiped my iced tea, pouring it down my throat in an effort to breath again. I wiped the tears from my eyes as I struggled to regain composure. He took my silence as a confession of my hedonistic behavior and proceeded to stand from the table and lecture with his finger pointed high in the air about the importance of a woman saving herself for the husband God has ordained for her and about he began to quote from Matthew 25 the Parable of the Ten Virgins. With a flourish he ended by saying,

“It is important you keep watch because you do not know the day or the hour!”

I looked around at all the people who seemed to be overly engrossed in their meals and avoided eye contact with us. I looked down at my own plate and scooped another bite of catfish into my mouth watching as he regathered himself and began eating. The waitress came over and refilled our water glasses without making eye contact.

I wiped my mouth after finishing my last bite and leaned across the table and quietly said to him.

“I may not know every verse in the bible and I may not be able to quote every example Jesus gave but what I do know is the difference between the Pharisees and the Sadducees and I know that you my dear are a Pharisee. You cling to the letter of the law while I am trying hard to embody the spirit of the law and therefore will not continue this date or being dating you again.”

I scooped up my winter armory and left the restaurant, staring hard at every person that worked so hard not to make eye contact with me.

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Comments
3 Responses to “Bad Date #1113”
  1. shawn says:

    What lady wears a winter hat in the summer?

  2. I admire your courage and your writing skills. As usual your Bible thumping, but not Bible understanding date failed to read the entire chapter and rightly divide the Word of God. Here is the section he failed to acknowledge:
    1Cor.11:16 But if any man seem to be contentious, WE HAVE NO SUCH CUSTOM, NEITHER THE CHURCHES OF GOD.
    The head covering thing was a matter of Old testament custom and even new testament custom in some of the fellowships, but man’s custom is one thing and The Word of God is The Will of God.

    What wonderful telling of a horrible event. But – You are the Best and You Are Blessed!

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