Friday, December 14, 2012

LITL: Beauty is in the Eye of the Record Holder

While reading through one of my Fitness magazines, I ran across an ad for Oakleys that featured Olympic gold medalist, Lindsey Vonn. The headline of the ad read "Beauty is in the eye of the record holder."

Many people have aspirations in life. Some hope to be rich, famous, attractive, athletic, etc. The world has so many things that it labels as beautiful. For some it lies in complexion, size, shape, accessories. These labels have changed over time, and have been used to describe not only people but many aspects of the world around us. The Romantic movement in literature hinged on a term, "sublime," that referred to something's beauty, not due to aesthetic pleasure, but to its ability to intimidate or terrify. I say all this to reitterate that beauty iof fleeting, not in its presence, but in its definition. 

This of course results in the phrase, "Beauty is in the eye of the beholder."

However, I particularly love the headline of this ad, because it places the ability to judge beauty not on the person looking, but on oneself. The record holder would normally be the object of beholding. But the one beholding you does not decide how or why you are beautiful. You determine that for yourself. 

I am pretty sure Linsay Vonn has days when she wakes up, looks in the mirror, and thinks, "Man my hair is rank." But even when she does, she still know she is looking at an Olympic Gold Medalist. While this may not necessarily be the most important think to her, I am pretty sure it ranks up there, or she wouldn't train or compete as hard as she does.

I say all this with this question in mind: As Christians, where do we find our own worth or beauty? What drives us to so determinedly live the way we do?

Are we living with the hope that we would be worthy for such a place as the, so called, Hall of Faith? 
Hebrews 11 - "Now faith is the reality of what is hoped for, the proof of what is not seen. For our ancestors won God’s approval by it. By faith we understand that the universe was created by God’s command, so that what is seen has been made from things that are not visible. By faith Abel offered to God a better sacrifice than Cain did. By faith he was approved as a righteous man, because God approved his gifts, and even though he is dead, he still speaks through his faith. By faith Enoch was taken away so he did not experience death, and he was not to be found because God took him away. For prior to his removal he was approved, since he had pleased God. Now without faith it is impossible to please God, for the one who draws near to Him must believe that He exists and rewards those who seek Him. By faith Noah, after he was warned about what was not yet seen and motivated by godly fear, built an ark to deliver his family. By faith he condemned the world and became an heir of the righteousness that comes by faith...  " And of course the list goes on.

Granted, we can be sure that Lindsay Vonn doesn't breeze through every practice. Take it from a former soccer player. There were days I wanted to cry, vomit, quit. All at the same time. 

Similarly there are days in our Christian walk that we want to give up. But we can be encouraged in the fact that our power does not arise from our own strength, but from God's.

2 Corinthians 12:9 "But He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.” Therefore, I will most gladly boast all the more about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may reside in me."

When we come into our relationship with Christ Jesus, we are then called to live a life set apart form the ways of the world. Contrary to popular belief, Christ doesn't make our lives easy after that point. Christ did not die to make this life easy, but rather to make it possible. 

"Beauty is in the eye of the record holder." Do you find your worth in things the world values, or in the things that the Lord has set for you? What accomplishment for the Lord do you hope your daily life achieves?

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