Monday, February 17, 2014


My wife and I went out for a date on Valentine's Day. Normally, we don't do anything TOO special - a card . . . maybe dinner of a simple gift. But this year we did something a little extra special - we got tickets to see Chris Botti, our favorite jazz trumpet player, who was performing in Green Bay.

Hours before the show began, my wife began getting herself ready. She has an entire procedure she goes through when she is getting ready to go out in public. I can't even begin to describe all the logistics, the application techniques, the color combinations, foundations, blushes . . . I just simply call it . . . makeup.

My wife doesn't really need any makeup in my opinion. She always looks beautiful in my eyes. But she must see some imperfections that I cannot see when she looks in the mirror. Whether they exist or not, she spends time each day trying to conceal her perceived imperfections.

As we were walking through the parking lot of the Weidner Center, on the University of Wisconsin - Green Bay campus, we saw lots of beautiful people. Many were being chauffeur-driven to the front doors. Others walked on the same sidewalk and my wife and I.

There was one couple directly in front of us. The man had kind of a Rand Paul look to him - long coat down to his knees, man-scarf, no hat covering his perfectly trimmed, salt-and-pepper hair. I probably looked equally stunning in my blue jeans, 25-year old winter jacket and Wisconsin Badger ski cap. Mmm. Maybe, but probably not.

The woman he was escorting was very beautiful . . . from what I could see of her. Her stockings had no snags or runs in them. Her high heels made her walk like she was going some place . . . or had already arrived. Very nice. She must have spent as much time getting ready for the concert as her date had, with much the same result.

Why do people get dressed up so fancy anyway? Why do people put on airs about who they are, utilizing makeup to hide every blemish, real or imagined?

When the concert started I noticed that Chris Botti had on a very nice suit. So did the two ladies who performed with him. But the rest of the band? Dress shirts and bluejeans. At least seeing what they were wearing made me feel a little more stylish about MY evening's wardrobe selection.

Slight change of direction here but what kind of clothes do you wear for church? Fancy? Laid back? Does it matter? And what about our religious leaders? What about The Pope? The Cardinals?  Bishops & Priests? Your pastor. Is the minister of your church the flowing robe and vestments type? Or is he a Hawaiian shirt and sandals kind of guy? Does he put on any makeup so his face doesn't cause a glare for the live-streaming video feed?

I think I am more of the John The Baptist type, when it comes to going out to dinner or dressing up. Camels hair coat and locusts for me, thank you very much. But why do we feel the need to dress up and look . . . rich? What does God think?

". . . women should adorn themselves in respectable apparel, with modesty and self-control, not with braided hair and gold or pearls or costly attire," - 1 Timothy 2:9

"But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not look on his appearance or on the height of his stature, because I have rejected him. For the Lord sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart. - 1 Samuel 16:7

Hey, there's a thought. What would happen if we all appeared to each other as we appear through the eyes of God? Would we be a little more understanding of each others dress? Or less? The Bible says that when God looks at us, in effect, He sees Jesus. God sees no imperfections. Yet, because God sees everything, he DOES see our imperfections and loves us just the same.

Hmm, I wonder. If none of us ever dressed up. If we dressed with modesty and self-control as it says in First Timothy, would the world in which we live be a better or worse place as a result? It wouldst be a better place, me thinkst.

Perhaps if we spent more time preparing our hearts and minds to come into the presence of God, we would ALL see the time as being an investment, not a waste. May the time we spend preparing ourselves in service of our King far outweigh the time we waste carrying the burden of men's opinions on our shoulders where they do not belong.

"13 Then I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and on the sea, and all that is in them, saying:

“To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be praise and honor and glory and power, for ever and ever!”
- Revelation 5:13


Emmanuel - from Chris Botti In Boston (feat. violinist Luci Micarelli)

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