It is the first Sunday of Lent. And here I am realizing that I had not mended or cleaned my orb. The "orb" is part of the vestments still worn in some protestant churches. Specifically, it is the white collar that flows out over the shoulders. But I knew what to do - borrow someone else's orb who was unlikely to be here.
I looked quickly down the list. Ted. A really nice student who rarely attends (I have seen him once this year). I sit next to him frequently even though I am in the tenor section and he is in the baritone or bass section.
Certainly Ted won't be here. I take the orb from his robe and immediately the feel is different than mine. I'm wearing a nearly thread-bare piece of cloth that picks up dust and dirt just being in the closet. Ted's still has a sheen on it; it must weigh 3 times mine and I can even read the label in it. Hmmm...what if I were to swap it? Not today, but permanently.
Pride: "I'm here most every Sunday, surely I should look good! Plus, I'm on the very first seat of the first row of chairs, quite visible to the congregation."
Envy/Lust: "I could sleep in this orb. It’s mostly clean, a little ironing and it will look new. Surely he didn't bring his own vestments. How did this almost virgin piece of clothing escape attention all these years?"
Greed: "I want to be the best at whatever I do. I want to sing like Magda. I want to look like Fred Astaire. I want to have it all. After all, I go to a church where it appears that many people already have it all. My offering is working hard in the choir - can't I have it all from where I am at?"
Wrath: "For all the money they pay the section leaders, they can't come up with nice vestments for the troopers?"
Sloth: "It will take hours of delicate cleaning and spray starch to even approach Ted's orb. Do I have that kind of time?"
Gluttony: "Heck, maybe I'll move several around and just have a spare. A nice one for those Sundays when you want to shine, and the other to pick up coffee stains."
The first Sunday of Lent. It’s going to take a lot of practice. So far, I just washed, ironed, and starched both orbs. Still deciding...