I pray this letter finds you well and blessed. Earlier today I saw one of my very young friends. I think Grayson is about four years old. She sort of bounced into the room where I was, looked up at me, and said very loudly “Your beard is REALLY white!” So, I immediately looked in a mirror and was shocked, she was right. It IS really white. How did that happen?
When I looked in the mirror today, and saw the white beard, I also saw that my beard was not the only thing giving away the “tenure of life experience I have gained” – like that. Yep, that means I am old. I honestly don’t think of myself as being old and the white hair and beard still surprise me a little. All of that is a little weird, because I know how old I am and yet, somehow I still deceive myself by thinking I should look differently. But, the mirror does not lie…it isn’t always kind…but it never lies.
So, all that caused me to wonder “What do I look like?” Honestly, I am not too concerned about white beards and such, but I am concerned with what I look like. In Romans 8, Paul says that we should all be “conformed to the image of Christ” (8:29) which means we should look like Jesus. Well, do we?
In Matthew 5, the Beatitudes, Jesus lays out what it means to blessed, which also seems to mirror how he lived. So, if we are to “look like Jesus” maybe our lives should reflect those things he called blessed. So, am I:
- Poor in Spirit?
- Comforting to those who mourn?
- Meek rather than proud?
- Seeking righteousness?
- Showing mercy to others?
- Pure in heart?
- Seeking peace and to be a peacemaker?
- Am I living boldly enough for Jesus and the Kingdom that I am persecuted?
I don’t mind the white beard, but my oh my, I would hate to look like something other than Jesus, or worse yet, something opposite of Jesus. So, friends, don’t worry about how you look or “what you wear” (Matthew 6:31). Be concerned instead about whether you look like Jesus. That is my prayer and goal. May I look more and more like Jesus…and less like Father Time.