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A Surprise in the Mirror

A few weeks ago I looked in the mirror and was surprised to see something I had never seen before.  I’m not one of those guys who buys all kinds of "product" and tries to stay young, but it still took me back.

What did I see? One, full gray hair.  I yanked it out.  Then I saw a few more, and realized I should be grateful I have hair and not pull them out.   

I’m just a bit north of 40 this year.  By the time my dad was 40, he was almost completely gray (obviously his son gave him far more stress than my kids have given me.)

I wondered for a minute how much of my brief encounter with graying is genetics and how much is stress.  As I reflected on the last year of ministry, I realized there has been unprecedented stress, exiting a ministry and launching two campuses and well, you know the rest.  Plus there’s been some great joy too.

And then I thought: if going gray is the cost of doing this ministry, bring it on. I get so excited by the stories of changed lives I hear, of families find hope and purpose, that I’d gladly have it consume my life, or at least some follicles.  I’m probably going to go gray anyway, and if being a small part of what God is doing accelerates it, that’s fantastic.  I don’t want my life to be about my pleasure, my comfort or my personal ambition, so that the end of it all I have to show for it is a big house and a full resume.  I want it to be about Jesus, and sharing Him with the people I love and the people He loves.  And sometimes, that’s brings its share of stress. 

Week after week, we hears stories of people having their first encounter with God in years (or ever) and people who are discovering Christ’s love.  That pumps me up totally (hey, remember to share your story of life change this week by emailing us at, and that increasingly consumes my personal prayers as we dream together about what Jesus can do.

Okay, that’s enough vanity for the next ten years of my life put together, but what’s it worth going gray  for in your life?  How have you experienced stress (I’m thinking of our amazingly dedicated volunteers who get up at 4:30 every Sunday morning), and what would you consider "worth it"?


  1. Stephanie on April 22, 2008 at 8:58 pm

    I won't reveal my age but a combo of genetics and work stress has caused my early greys! I work in Environmental Education- inspiring an ethic of care for God's beautiful Earth- My goddess it's worth every hair turning grey!

  2. Brad MacDonald on April 22, 2008 at 8:47 pm

    Hey Carey
    I just learned in Grade 11 biology that hair loss/greying etc. comes from the mother's side of the family. Unfortunately it looks like I will be skipping the grey hair, and going straight to NO hair.
    At Connexus I am a small group leader at UpStreet for the Grade 5's. I love working with those kids and it would be worth going grey just for them. A good majority of my kids are boys and I try my hardest to be a positive male influance on them. Back in the day I always looked up to the high school boys, so I know they probably think the same. If I set a good example for them, and show them how to be good people, then hopefully they will make good decisions in their lives. I take my role as a SGL really seriously and its what I really think would be worth having my hair go grey for.

  3. Justin Piercy on April 22, 2008 at 1:14 pm

    Hey Carey…just so you don't feel so bad, I just turned 22, and already have a pretty healthy tuft of grey hair…. I don't attribute it to my involvement at Connexus tho;) So as weird as it may seem to be welcomed into the grey hair club, especially by a 22 year old, Welcome! Wear it proudly!

    (If Connexus was what was making me go grey, I would wear it with honour:)


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