She don’t know she’s beautiful

beauty3 There’s a kind of innocence to the lives and conduct of those deemed righteous in God’s eyes that is beyond compare. It beams softly at us from the pages of scripture. We would do well to take note.

 In Matthew chapter 25 Jesus gives several examples of what the kingdom of God is like. In its closing parable we find God, the King, declaring the following:

 Come, you blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world:

For I was  hungry, and you gave me meat: I was thirsty, and you gave me drink: I was a stranger, and you took me in:

 Naked, and you clothed me: I was sick, and you visited me: I was in prison, and you came unto me.

 Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when did we see you hungry, and fed you? or thirsty, and gave you drink?

When did we see you a stranger, and took you in? or naked, and clothed you?

 Or when did we see you sick, or in prison, and came unto you?

 And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as you have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, you have done it unto me. (Matthew 25:34-40)

What strikes me most about this passage is the response of those the King invites to inherit his kingdom. (vs. 37) It’s almost as if that they weren’t aware that they were ‘righteous’, as He’s declaring and they’re described here being.–If it helps semantically you can substitute any one of a number of other definitions for ‘righteous’.–virtuous, just, good, blameless, upright. God seemed to have been taking note and keeping score of his beneficiaries, but they apparently were not, as they had to even prod the king to give them examples of when, where and how they had done and been such.

I’m reminded of the following lyrics to a catchy popular country and western song that I hear from time to time on the radio by American country music singer Sammy Kershaw:

She don’t know she’s beautiful
(Never crossed her mind)
She don’t know she’s beautiful
(No, she’s not that kind)
She don’t know she’s beautiful
Though time and time I’ve told her so

 And the thing about it is that this sentiment can apply equally, in a spiritual sense, to believers, Christ’s redeemed, unaware of their spiritual splendor, as it does to the physically beautiful woman unaware of her beauty. In fact, that is the way I’ve begun to think about it. I’m convinced that this is the way Christ looks at His Bride, the believing Body of Christ—she’s beautiful in his eyes.

Similarly in a passage from the Sermon on the Mount Jesus teaches:

But when you do alms*, let not your left hand know what your right hand does:

 That your alms may be in secret: and your Father which sees in secret himself shall reward you openly. (Matthew 6:3,4)

 I always seemed to stumble to grasp the practical meaning of that verse: How does one ‘not let the left hand know what the right hand is doing’?– A bit of a head-scratcher. But when seen in this same light of unconscious innocence, of not being so consciously aware of what one is doing or accomplishing, not keeping a mental file cabinet or spiritual score-card but just simply doing, innocently, unconsciously doing  out of a outward oriented love for others, it makes much more sense.

To be beautiful, whether physically or spiritually, and to be unconscious of it, is to have beauty upon beauty, a beauty that is astounding to others and though silent, speaks volumes. Let’s not be self-conscious but Christ conscious in “the beauty of His holiness.”

 *alms-religious duty; to help a needy person

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