She’s got that Glow

I’ve read several blogs today that have really bothered me.  And I’m wondering why – is it a prejudice of my own that needs dealing with, or is it something deeper that I just have yet to identify?  Yeah, yeah… back up and let us in on the scoop, here…

One gal wrote about christians who have that ‘glow’.  That she sees them and wants to be like them.  Then another gal wrote about a movie she watched were the people were “more gracious than she had ever been in her life”.  And I thought about Lori Wick books, and how much I’d originally loved them, but how TOTALLY artificial the characters have become over her years of writing, until you think that all of them (even the men) are just one big cookie-cuttered, soft ‘n sensitive, perfect being given different names.  It amazes you that there’s even a plot, so perfect is the world she creates.

While other people see folk that have it all together, who always smile and do the ‘right’ things and behave impeccably… and they want to BE LIKE that… I step back and frown.  Gut reaction?  Personal bias?  I’m not sure at this point.  Just talking thru my thoughts, here, so bear with me…

I guess what I’m seeing is something that looks far too good to be true.  I’ve spent my entire life trying to be like Christ, seeking His face and His Truth… and I’m no perfect peach.  By a LONG shot.  Fact of the matter is, I fall WAYYY short, and there’s no hiding it.  And the reaction to the Truth I bring isn’t “I want some of that!”, either.  Frankly, I’m spat on, I’m screamed at, I’m scorned and gossiped about, I’m excluded and called names and the brunt of all things malicious… and that’s from the christians, alone!  ((Although one would question the oxymoron of that entitlement being applied to such behavior…))

My point is that Christ was spat on, screamed at, scorned, betrayed, gossiped about (think Pharisees), excluded, called names, and was the brunt of all things malicious.  And that was from the ‘holy’ folk.  1 Corinthians 4:9-10 says, For I think that God hath set forth us the apostles last, as it were appointed to death: for we are made a spectacle unto the world, and to angels, and to men.  We are fools for Christ’s sake, but ye are wise in Christ; we are weak, but ye are strong; ye are honourable, but we are despised.  Despised, made a spectacle, are considered fools…

Do people with ‘the glow’ have these qualities?  Are they despised?  Are they spectacles?  Are they considered fools – scorned and spat on and gossiped about and the brunt of all things malicious?  Do the cookie-cuttered perfect beings that sit with their ankles crossed at Bible study… the ladies who people say “THAT’S what I want to be like!”… do they know a smidgen of the shame Christ knew and despised?  (Heb 12:2)   Do they realize the gravity of the task we’re called to?  Do they know the consequences?  I’m not so sure they do.  It’s too perfect a picture.

The reality is that nobody wants to be despised or made the brunt of gossip and malice and scorn.  Nobody wants to be like the person who’s ganged up on for their faith.  Nobody wants to put themselves in the shoes of the missionary in China who is imprisoned and weak and forsaken.  No, we’d rather be like her, the example of godly serenity and perfection.

I don’t buy it.  It’s artificial.  It’s not real.  No person is perfect, and no person truly devoted to the cause we’re called to (go ye therefore, teach all nations, take up your cross, run the race, fight the fight, preach the word, etc.) has time to devote to maintaining that image.  It’s not consistent with what Christ says will be the lot of a Christian:  Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves… beware of men, for they will deliver you up to the councils, and they will scourge you in their synagogues…and ye shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake: but he that endureth to the end shall be saved. …Think not that I have come to send peace, but a sword… and he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after Me, is not worthy of Me.   (Mt 10)

I don’t trust ‘that glow’ any further than I can throw it.  It’s drawing attention to self, and that’s not what we were redeemed to do.  It doesn’t point to God, it points to her.  And to say ‘I want to be like her‘ is to say I want people to see ME that way.  Did you catch that?  ME.  Not God.  Ouch, Anna.  But that’s where my beef lays, I’m thinking.

I may be prickly, jaded, sarcastic and a quick-wit, but what I do isn’t to draw attention to me.  What I say isn’t gonna get me invited to the clique, win me a following, or cause people to say ‘I wanna be like her’.  I’m not her.  And I haven’t ‘the glow’.  But I know someone who radiates a far greater glow than any woman can, and I’m hoping you’re seeing things about Him here that you never considered before…  and in the end, I hope what you choose to say is ‘I want to be like Him’.  That’s the desire of my heart.

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