Recognizing Beauty

Interesting how beauty catches the eye and draws the affections. We love to look at beautiful people, paintings, scenery, architecture. I have acquaintances who speak about beautiful people as “eye candy” admitting that the eye is drawn to beauty. Proverbs makes this connection of eyes and heart with the warning: Do not lust in your heart after her beauty or let her captivate you with her eyes.

Most people that I know would say that they have high standards for beauty, but perhaps our standards for beauty are too low and we settle for mere created beauty. Could it be that our appetites for beauty are too weak?

C.S. Lewis writes in Weight of Glory, “Indeed, if we consider the unblushing promises of reward and the staggering nature of the rewards promised in the Gospels, it would seem that Our Lord finds our desires, not too strong, but too weak. We are half-hearted creatures, fooling about with drink and sex and ambition when infinite joy is offered us, like an ignorant child who wants to go on making mud pies in a slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by the offer of a holiday at the sea. We are far too easily pleased.”

What if we did more gazing or gawking at the Beautiful Savior who gave Himself for us? The actions of the woman in Mark 14 //John 12 show the eyes and heart of a woman who recognized True Beauty. What if our desire was that of the Psalmist? “One thing I ask from the LORD, this only do I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to gaze on the beauty of the LORD and to seek him in his temple.” (Psalm 27:4) If we did, wouldn’t we find Him more attractive? Wouldn’t we raise our standards of beauty? Wouldn’t our hearts follow our eyes?

Published by John Estorge


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