Then we learned about them. They spread faster than anything we had ever planted, in places we really didn’t want them, but the worst was this—they were only beautiful early in the morning or right after a rain. Otherwise those blooms turned black and ugly by noon, earlier in the heat of summer. If ever there was a fair weather flower, this was it.
Just as I misjudged the beauty of those wildflowers, I fear that some of us may be mistaken about how God judges our beauty. Dressing up on Sunday morning is not what matters to God. Having a tie on is not what makes a man worthy to serve at the Lord’s Table. While I dress carefully on Sundays, one of the few times I get to wear a pretty dress these days, it has little to do with whether God thinks I am beautiful. To God, beauty is seen in faithfulness, in righteous and holy lives, and in kindness shown to others. In many cases, we don’t look particularly pretty while doing those things.
We never look better to God than when we are bruised and bloody from a fight with Satan, battered from overcoming the temptation to sin. We are pretty when we are clad in old clothes cleaning up after our families, and handsome when plastered with sweat and dirt from doing the yard work for a widow. We are lovely to God when we sit around in our old blue jeans talking about the Bible to a friend who asked a question, or inviting a neighbor to a Bible study. We are beautiful to Him when our bodies are thin and our eyes sunken from facing an illness that came only because so many years ago the Devil succeeded with Adam, yet we face it with trust in a God who has a plan. We are especially gorgeous to Him when our bodies are old and bent, and our hair gray and thin, having lived a life of faithfulness.
Spiderworts are pretty only when things are easy, only when life is fun. When that’s over, they live up to their name—black and ugly, a weed everyone could do without. Don’t make God feel that way about you.
I am faint and sore bruised: I have groaned because of the tumult of my heart. Lord, all my desire is before you; And my groaning is not hidden from you. My heart throbs, my strength fails me: As for the light of mine eyes, it also is gone from me. My lovers and my friends stand aloof from my plague; And my kinsmen stand afar off… in you, O Jehovah, do I hope: You will answer, O Lord my God. Psa 38:8-11,15.