Devotion in Motion: A Happy Boy at Haircut Time

“Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they?” Matthew 6:26 NASB

By Bro. John L. Cash, “Country Preacher Dad”

One of the things I like best about writing this column is that I get to pass on a little pastoral advice. My wife and I have already raised our sons through the “little kid” stage, and we’ve learned a trick or two in the process. Something I’ve realized, too, is that the problems of parenthood are universal. So, I’m always glad to pass on the helpful hints I’ve learned while raising my boys.

Today’s subject is this: “How do I keep my little boy from screaming his head off when I take him to get a haircut?” When my boys were toddlers, my wife took them to her hair stylist when they needed their curls cut off. We couldn’t understand why they pitched such fits when faced with the prospect of getting their hair trimmed. I mean, they liked the hair stylist fine (as long as she wasn’t cutting their hair) and she always gave them a Three Musketeers Bar afterwards.

Then one day it occurred to me why the sight of the lady in the hair salon caused them to behave as if they were demon-possessed. It was the scissors. I mean, after all, we tell our toddlers all the time, “No, no. Don’t touch the scissors. You’ll poke your eye out.” Evidently, they take us at our word and believe what we’re saying is true. Then, in practically the same breath, we take them to a woman who ties a sheet around the throat and comes toward their head with a pair of gleaming shears sharpened to a surgical point.  You’ve got to admit, to a little kid, it’s got to resemble a scene from “Sweeney Todd, The Demon Barber of Fleet Street”.

So, after a particularly bad day of screaming-haircut-Armageddon, I told my wife, Susan, “Next time, let me take care of haircut day.” She readily agreed. And when the boys were due for their next trim, instead of taking them to her hair stylist, I took them to a local barbershop.

The barber there is Mr. Bill Gordon, a man who has had a barbershop across from the Meridian, Mississippi post office since the 1950’s. He’s a gentleman who has a real grandfatherly appearance about him. I’ll never forget the way he spoke to my younger son, Seth, who was about 2 ½ at the time. He said, “Hey, big fella. Are you ready for Mr. Bill to give you a haircut?” With a smile on his face, Seth climbed up into the big red barber’s chair, as if he had been put on this planet solely for that purpose.  There were no haircut tears that day and none ever since.

Now, what was the difference, you may ask? First of all, in a barber shop there are no scissors because the barber uses a set of electric clippers instead. But more than that, if you go to the right barbershop, you get a barber who is somebody’s Pappaw. There is no fear when you’re being taken care of by a grandfather who loves you. You just know in your heart-of-hearts that you’re in good hands.

Dear mamas, as you go through this week, don’t forget that you are in good hands because you’re the child of a Heavenly Father who loves you. Let that thought fill you with great joy, as you serve Him by caring for the little ones that He has given you.

Dr. John L. Cash is the “Country Preacher Dad” *Sing that  title to the tune of “Secret Agent Man” He was raised in Stuttgart, Arkansas, and is beginning his 25th year of  being a country preacher in the piney woods five miles south of the little town of Hickory, Mississippi. He and his lovely wife, Susan, and his sons, Spencer (age 18) and Seth (age 15) live in the parsonage next door to the Antioch Christian Church” (where the boys are no longer afraid of the barber but quite often could use a haircut). You should write him at