An interesting discussion over at Nancy’s blog


Okay, I should put my oar in the water before I ask you what you think.

Personally, I think tattoos are a turn-off.
My struggle is not to be judgmental when I see one.
And I have more than one friend with a tattoo.
But an internal transaction always has to happen.
That is just my preference, not any doctrine.

If a friend told me she was contemplating a tattoo,
and we were good friends,
I would try to talk her out of it.

I’m still working through what arguments I would use.


11 thoughts on “Tattoos

  1. Carol – I’m completely with you on this one. I have such texture and tactile issues, I can’t even handle the idea of writing on my hand with a pen. Adding a needle to the equation just sends me through the roof. Apart from that, I have to do a total internal transaction, too, because I just think they’re … so…. PERMANENT. and REGRETTED by most people I know… and … UNNECESSARY. I’m not sure why my response to them is so visceral… just not a fan.My best girlfriend in highschool got comedy-tragedy masks tattooed on her appendix-removal scar. I want you all to visualize what they looked like several years later when she was pregnant. Yes. Regretted.Steph

  2. a tatoo is taboo – q: why do you want one? remains (logically) unaswerable even to teens’ own ears; now with them 12 hours driving away from home, we just trust that the quiet voice remains within hearing distance…(the piercings happened)…

  3. So with you on this one!!!!  I try very hard to not be judgemental about it..but….I detest them….I also detest all the hair dying and all the piercings.  Why can’t we be happy with how God made us??  So permanent….good grief buy some cool clothes…get a great “make a statement” haircut….somethin’.But then I have an Edna name…so I MUST be old!

  4. My biggest problem with tattoos has to do with the motivation behind them. I completely understood Steven Curtis Chapman’s family’s decision to have their daughter Maria’s name tattooed somewhere small on their body as remembrance. I wouldn’t choose to remember a family member that way – but I could understand. On the other hand, I have a sister who is now on her 7th tattoo – big ones, too. They’re very well-done – beautiful really, as far as the artwork goes – but it still saddens me every time I see her body marked up like that. She has always had a streak of rebellion that she has not let God work on – combine that with unhappiness with herself – and you have a motivation that is not God’s best for her. Carrie

  5. Carol,It does seem rather pagan for some reason and especially to do it in honor of the dead, but I am not sure if that is a scriptural answer.   I would like to think that my opinion is a spiritual opinion but I am not sure about it. It is certainly becoming more and more popular and I honestly can’t understand why someone would do something permanent that they know they will probably regret later but it is gaining popularity among Christians also.  So it is a good topic to discuss. I don’t want to be judgmental either, but I do have an opinion.

  6. Well, I resisted putting down an opinion, but then went to the blog you referred to, where there were opinions galore! What I find most interesting is that no one seems to have a scripture that says, “Thou shalt not tattoo,” which brings it basically back to opinions. It seems to me that all of us do things to and with our bodies to make our own personal statement to the world–with clothes, cosmetics, jewelry (pierced or otherwise), etc. So why is tattooing such a problem? Because it is so “in your face”? Because it is permanent? My only problem comes when others start becoming judgmental–which we Christians are the first to be, unfortunately–and looking down on those who have tattoos. I can remember when we thought it was awful that our daughters were no longer wearing pantyhose with their dresses to church–and today that is laughable! The point to me is that God is our Judge, not us.And by the way, there is a tattoo artist named Kat von D ( who does some magnificent tattoos, including a whole back someone had done with a Psalm and a boat being tossed on waves that is gorgeous. The point being, we can praise God publicly with our bodies, and maybe even more importantly, remind ourselves of our God’s amazing, redemptive love towards us.By the way, do I have any tattoos? No. Will I ever get one? Doubtful…I have a low pain tolerance level!

  7. I did my medical residency in the SF Bay area in the 1980’s at a county hospital. We took care of a lot of prisoners. The nurses could tell which prisons the patients had been in by their homemade, make that prison made, tattoos. Our chief of medicine, liberal on everything, said that the degree of the personality disorder was in direct relationship to the number of tattoos. As they become more acceptable in society I meet more people who have them that I don’t think are crazy, but I still find that those with tattoos that are highly visible (neck, face, hands) or are obscene or otherwise inappropriate, are usually people who hate themselves and express it through disfiguring their bodies.

  8. This is an awesome post and set of comments, simply for the fact people have, like you said Carol, kind of a gut reaction to tattoos. i have found that to be true of many things here in the SF Bay Area, having grown up at a conservative church in Portland Oregon. Every single thing we say in answer to the tattoo argument can be carried to extreme–even our body as a temple, and being satisfied with ourselves as God made us. Does that mean we shouldn’t use hair products? (that would be a bad thing for humanity if i didn’t!) or nail polish? Tattoos seem to mean something different to each person. Decoration (like sort of a permanent cool haircut) or the pride of self-mutilation of being in a certain prison (self identity) or “i’m over age now!” (many decisions regretted based on that one!) i think the reasons are as varied as the people who get them.For whatever reason, i no longer have a huge problem when i see a kid with blue hair–after working with teens at our church, i learned they often are trying to keep adults at arm’s reach with their piercings and such. It’s a dare–“will you still accept me when i’m being so in your face??” It’s a lot like the days of when listening to rock and roll was very “in your face” to the adults listening to their soft and melodious tunes. (ooh–just showed MY bias there!)Long winded, but just my observations over time–we can make rules like crazy for teens and others, but it might be better to make relationships. Then we can be a  bridge to the God who created us rather than a brick wall. (not a judgement of those who feel differently, just experiences having worked with and housed some pretty troubled kids.)

Leave a Reply to toomanyhats Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s