BEAUTY

I confess. I am an addict. I am hooked – a junkie of a sort. Have been since high school – and that was a looooong time ago! Oh, (I defend myself), but I am not as bad as some other people! No, no, no, its not drugs or alcohol or anything bad like that.

You may think that I am completely wacko when I tell you this. You may think that I have gone off the deep end or lost what few marbles I could ever have laid claim to, but here goes. I am an addicted to science fiction and have been for many years. Oh, I don’t go around dressed in funny clothes and attend conventions pretending to be characters in my favorite movie series like a Trekkie (or Trekker, if you prefer). I am not that far gone!

I love the imaginary worlds and the challenges that alien races present the intrepid adventurer-hero. I love the excitement of the unknown. For years (back in my saner days) I hardly read any SF books at all. Loved the original Star Trek on TV. Was astounded at the special effects of the Star Wars movies. And now with the advent of the Kindle reading device and the availability of so many free books in digital format, I am reading more SF books than ever. I don’t mean that I read all the time, but truth be told, I guess I spend too much time at it.

You may be wondering about what I am getting at with all this rambling. Simply this. Have you ever noticed that with but few exceptions, the “aliens” in science fiction are hideously ugly? And they are just as mean as they are ugly! For the most part they are humanoid, but have grotesque bony plates on their heads, horribly crooked, jagged, sharp crooked teeth, horns on their heads or their faces or have scales and tails or some other equally disgusting feature. And of those “species” that are attractive in form, they have skin coloring that ranges from iridescent blue to muddy green to who knows what all else. Ah, but I suppose those aliens wouldn’t be nearly as threatening or frightening if they looked just like you and me. Remarkable, isn’t it, that the people who write and produce this kind of literature can’t seem to imagine anything more beautiful than a human being? Their creatures almost always have to be mud-ugly!

God is not like that. He has made “everything beautiful in its time.” (Ecclesiastes 3:11). Why shouldn’t human beings, the crowning glory of creation, not be beautiful? Oh, I know not everyone possesses perfect physical or facial beauty. Some people, for whatever reason and through no fault of their own, may be physically handicapped with twisted, misshapen bodies. But the vast majority of us are just “run-of-the-mill” ordinary when comes to looks. However, even these can possess a beauty that surpasses the most exquisite flower.

You see, our likeness to God – and hence our beauty – consists not in our outward appearance, but in the inward person of the heart or the character. It is as Peter instructed godly women…

Do not let your adorning be external—the braiding of hair and the putting on of gold jewelry, or the clothing you wear— but let your adorning be the hidden person of the heart with the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which in God’s sight is very precious.” (1 Peter 3:3-4).

That kind of beauty must be cultivated every bit as carefully as a vain person cares for her outward beauty. But unlike outward beauty which is proverbially only “skin deep,” the beauty of godly character is through and through and eternal to boot. And its appeal is not to the vain and superficial, but people of noble, godly character will be drawn to the inward beauty of another godly person.

God appreciates another kind of beauty, too. He is “into” beautiful feet! Don’t believe it? Read: Isaiah 52:7.

How beautiful upon the mountains
are the feet of him who brings good news,
who publishes peace, who brings good news of happiness,
who publishes salvation,
who says to Zion, “Your God reigns
.”

A person who preaches the gospel, telling others about God’s rule or kingdom and about the salvation He offers through the gospel is said to have beautiful feet! (Romans 10:15). Their feet are beautiful because they are engaged in a beautiful work – the work of telling others about the love of God and the hope he offers to those who love Him. What could be more beautiful than that?

So if someone comes to you and wants to tell you the story of God’s love for you and the salvation He offers in Christ, invite him in, but don’t stare at his or her feet! Just know that they are beautiful – and listen to them!

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