A Christian in a Hijab
By Anastasia Marcum.
Anastasia participated in our pilot program for Clarify in Asheville last summer. For Lent, Rachel has chosen to wear a hijab in an attempt to appreciate the Journey of Muslim women in America. She is blogging about her experience, and we are honored for Rachel to share with us here.
Lent has recently become one of my favorite times of the year. It is a time that I have found where I can truly step out of my comfort zone as I draw closer to God. Forty days is the perfect amount of time; it is just long enough to get immersed into something new, yet it is a short enough to have an end in sight.
This semester, I will be graduating with a Bachelor’s degree in Religion and will attend Asbury Theological Seminary in the fall. On Shrove Tuesday (also known as Fat Tuesday), my professors for my capstone religion course asked my classmates and me to put on different religious garbs and walk around campus for twenty minutes. For the sake of this exercise, I chose to wear the hijab. The purpose of the exercise was for us to be aware of our inner emotions, as well as the reactions from our peers. As soon as we returned to class, I had this overwhelming feeling that twenty minutes was not enough time for us to truly understand the purpose of this exercise. It was in these moments that I received an undeniable nudge from God that was pushing me to take this further.
To prevent a hasty decision, I approached one of my professors after class to share with him this nudge that I was feeling. At first my professor was shocked, but immediately became very supportive and encouraging. After class I went home and spent that evening discussing this decision with my momma and I prayed. After a good night’s rest, the nudge was still there, so I decided to message my two friends who are Muslim women. Both friends were ecstatic at the idea of me walking in their shoes for forty days and eagerly helped me construct an idea of how to dress and how to act while wearing the hijab. After spending the day wrestling with the idea further, I went to the evening Ash Wednesday service ready to accept God’s calling to wear the hijab during Lent.
As a person who is chronically curious, I am using these forty days to strengthen my relationship with God as I learn about the Muslim religion and myself. Throughout Lent, I have been writing a blog, where I have been posting reflections a couple times a week. In these reflections, I comment about my daily experiences, conversations that I have had with a variety of people, as well as some of the emotions that I may be experiencing. Here is the link to my blog:
I would be honored if you accompanied me in this journey! May God be with you always!