It cost me $1 on eBay…and it was only 111 pages long. So when I took this paperback novel in as my “light” reading material for my evening bath, you can imagine my surprise when I found it to be one of the most powerful books I’ve ever read. I would love to say it was the steam that made my eyes run, but it was the power of love that made my tears flow on this.
There really isn’t much I can add to the words contained within the covers of this book … and I won’t because this isn’t so much a review of the “work” itself, but rather a review of what the “work” did to me. See … on one hand, I am amazed at how easily an author can knock thru our own walls of denial and get straight to his issue before you even realize he is there … but on the other, I realize that that is the calling card of a great writer.
In his tale of two “beauties” named Nadia and Marci, Ted Dekker reaches past the perception of beauty and shows the blindfolds that society forces upon our eyes. He lays out in graphic detail the “rules” we unconsciously follow and then works hard to peel back those layers, exposing them for what they are. Father Michael, a sincere man of God who struggles against the sudden invasion of pure evil set loose in his quiet village, has a moment when his own clarity is found:
“Before, his sight had been masked by a preoccupation with the reality that now seemed foolish and distant by comparison. Like mud pies next to delicious mounds of ice cream.”
As I finished this “little” book thru tear-filled eyes, I realized that there are times when my inability to see past what I choose to notice about people keeps me from the truth of His love…not only for others, but also for myself.
I tend to limit God to live within a box that says “Well, one day I/she/he will be “beautiful” in heaven, but for now I can just stand back, removed from who the person they are letting me see.” I feel ashamed to realize that my own shallow sense of comfort often warps my perception … that my own doubts and frustrations cloud the beauty of His call to me to reach out and love … whether that person lives outside the walls of my home or is the one who faces me in the mirror each morning, I am asked to love and be a living example of His grace and mercy. The reality is that under the workmanship of His hands, we were made beautiful … and in the redemption of His sacrifice, we are washed clean.
These truths invaded my steam-filled bathroom and as reality re-introduced itself to the blurred edges of my own justifications, I could only bow my head in prayer to the One who has made us.
…I could only humbly confess my own inability to see even myself in the light that He created me in and I asked for a chance to see from Heaven’s perspective when it comes to the beauty of all those in my life.
…I could only bed that He allow me to see the ice cream instead of the mud … and that I would be wise enough to know the difference between them…and that I would choose what is best as I seek to partake each day.
Looking up as always…