Beauty. As the speaker walked from the side of the room and made her way to the stage, my jaw dropped. I was left completely in awe of this woman’s beauty. When my eyes registered the true beauty they were taking in, time seemed to stop. Silence enveloped me, and the rest of the world seemed to develop a fuzzy haze. The single solitary thing in sharp detail was her face. I was suddenly acutely focused on one thing: This woman. As she opened her mouth to speak, I became so much greater then Caleb. Normally I can’t do more than one thing at once, but while she spoke I could take in every characteristic of her person at once, along with listen, and without flaw, discern every word that found its way out of her mouth. She had porcelain ivory skin. Her hair shimmered in the light of the room, and danced at the middle of her back as she walked. Her features were sharp and straight, as was the piercing intensity of her eyes. Somehow, they still held gentleness though. Also, I could smell so many things in the room now: pop corn from the man munching to my left, the fragrance of the woman sitting to my right, the smell of paint-thinner left from the room having been painted just weeks before. The images of these few moments in my life are still crisp and clear in my memory. The sounds, the smells and the sights…all still kept up here in my head.
This memory left an impact on me. WHY?
I’m sure that you are all thinking of a moment in your lives that you have seen something of great beauty or, if not, I’m sure you can all think of a moment in your life that sticks out clearly. Maybe a moment of great fear…great pain…great happiness…great peace. Maybe you are thinking of a moment of the beauty of another, or someone showing you REAL love. So many emotions are locked forever in our memories. Things that have been special to us, be them positive impacts or negative.
I described this particular memory in my life because it is so strongly attached to an IMAGE in my mind. Image is an important sense in my life. I think that image is a primary sense for many of us. I mean, a huge literary tool we have in literature is imagery. We describe how something looks, how things take place in reference to our sight. Its strange that we describe our ability to create things in our minds apart from this world as an “imagination”. I would “imagine” that blind people would not want to call their frame of reference an “imagination”…but yet we who can see call it that anyway. Also, as Christians, I’m sure we all have some sort of image of heaven in our minds. We have some sort of image attached to Jesus or angels or maybe even a symbolic image attached to love or hate or any other facet of the human emotion spectrum.
I am talking so much about “image” and the importance, in my mind, of this sense because of something I’ve read in the bible SO much.
In Genesis, the creation is the beginning of everything in this world. To me, based on my perception and understanding of this world, this is important. Everything in this life, here and now, has a beginning and an end. God made sure to mention the beginning of man as special. READ Genesis 1:26-31
There is so much in these passages. I want to focus on the mention of image. It says that we were made in the image of God. God, in his perfection, decided to make us in his likeness, in his image. Now, I’m not perfect, and I have a lot to learn in my life, but I think that this was an amazing gift. Now, I want to see if my line of thought here is coherent. We are all men and women correct? Yes, and if we are all men and women, then we are all made in God’s image correct? And, if we are all different, which I’m sure we are, don’t you think we all might hold different parts of the infinite creator? I mean, isn’t it true that we all have gifts, and that we all have different weaknesses? Paul made plenty of references to that. There are plenty of biblical references to unity and cooperation, brotherly love, treating each other better than ourselves…why is that? So many references, in essence, to regarding human life and wellbeing as the pinnacle of importance. In verse 31, which we just read, the writer made a point to separate day six from the first five days. He says, “…it was very good…” in day six, whereas in the other five days, “…it was good…”.
Why is that? It seems like there is something about man that is exclusive; something about being human that separates us from the rest creation. We alone wear the image of God.
Now, that seems special in concept, but what does that do for us in our everyday lives? I like concepts a lot. I think and consider concepts most all of the time…but what good is thinking if it doesn’t cause me to act in a manner that is pleasing to God and those around me? I have a hard time acting though…
This concept, of separation and exclusive giftedness, being recognized, I want to share what it does for me. It helps me love someone who is harder to love than anyone else in the world. It helps me love someone that I know better than anyone else in this world. It helps me love someone that I have been with for every moment of my life. I’ve seen their greatest good, and their worst bad. I’ve been with them at the summit of their Zion, and I’ve been with them in the belly of their great fish with Jonah. This concept helps me love ME. Who else in the world knows how hard it is to love me better than me? Who else knows your flaws better than you? The answer is GOD. God knows us better than we know ourselves…he knew that before he created us…BUT HE STILL CREATED US. THAT is the gift. That is what this concept does for me. It helps me see what we have in life…the INFINITE Creator has given us a gift…and asked of us nothing but service and obedience. He has asked us to pass that on to others…to give back to others what he has given us…to best of our ability. And that, just like the uniqueness of our being, is a TRULY beautiful thing…