Saturday, May 3, 2008

"Her Beauty Makes Others Beautiful"

In England there is a man named Rob Whittaker. He is the principle at Capernwray Hall, a Bible school housed in a "castle" nestled in the breathtaking hills of the Lake District in Northern England. During my time at this school, Rob said many things that convicted me, taught me, increased my knowledge of the Bible, and encouraged me. One of the things he said that I want to mention because it's been on my mind, is not necessarily a revelation, and it's not as if I didn't know it already - but every time I realize I'm not doing this, I think of Rob. He said,
"If you want to know what God is like, get to know Jesus. It's a good idea to spend a little time every day reading in the gospels, soak in what Jesus is like."
I definitely have not read out of the gospels every day since I heard this advice - but I think it is a really good suggestion. If not every day, at least often. I've known Jesus for a long time, but I will never know him well enough. He is so constant, yet I continue to learn new things about Him and from Him. Reading about Jesus is so rewarding - and it's cool because Jesus likes spending time with us. Another thing Rob said that I really liked,
"I'm going to tell you something that 90 percent of Christians don't know. Not only does Jesus love you, He likes you."
I really like this thought. It's encouraging and comforting. And I need to remember it more often.

Another semi-related thought - last week I was studying for a midterm; cramming my head full of information about the legend of Tristan and Isolde. I have read six different books about this story, by six different authors by this point in the quarter. My brain was a little tired and I was having trouble separating who said what in what book, etc. (It was also 1 a.m. - so that could be a contributing factor to the confusion.) In reading the description of Isolde's beauty, in the text written by Gottfried von Strassburg, I came across this line, and it stood out to me amid the haze of information. The line was simply this, "...her beauty made others beautiful." I stopped and tried to wrap my mind around that. What a cool description. It made me think about one of my favorite passages of scripture in Isaiah 53:
"...He has no stately form or majesty that we should look upon Him, nor appearance that we should be attracted to Him. He was ... a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief."
Even though there was no reason from His physical appearance that people should be attracted to Jesus, they were still drawn to Him. The beauty of His love and sacrifice made us beautiful and perfect in God's eyes.

In getting to know Jesus, and endeavoring to be more like Him, I would love for my "beauty" to make others beautiful - that they would see Christ in me and in turn reflect it in their own lives.


Jill said...

In CS Lewis's The Great Divorce it talks about a woman in heaven whose beauty makes others beautiful. She didn't stand out that much in life, but she loved and cared about everyone. She made men love her, but it was real love so that the men would go home and love their wives so much more. It just reminds me of that. Something to strive for.

Jeffery said...

Yeah, Lewis also deals with concept in Till We Have Faces, Orual, the ugly sister has to deal with, Psyche's amazing beauty and the different types of loves they have for each other. Eye opening.

aimeeaileen said...

i like all the quotes the whole piece is tied together nicely ( im sounding like a journalism major or something...) But i like what you make me think about, and I also love the concept of a beauty--or a love--that makes others beautiful. such a paradox. God seems to use paradox a lot. Contrast. I already love contrast, I guess. It's just interesting to think that God does too!

Thanks love you girl!!!!!!