Freshman year of college. I’m sick. Sick enough that I make an evening appointment at the health clinic.
While I’m waiting for my appointment time, I hang out in the main lobby of my dorm where a MaryKay demonstration is taking place. MaryKay is all about skin care but they carry make up as well. I’m not much about skin care and I rarely wear make up, but it’s kind of like dress up: hard to resist playing.
I am easily talked into participating until I have to leave for my doctor appointment. I make it all the way through the face washing and right into the foundation and blush. Then I head out for the clinic.
When I get there, the doctor asks, So what can I do for you? I tell him I haven’t been feeling well. He looks at me funny – You look healthy. I confess I have just come from a MaryKay party.
He is not amused. While he looks down my throat, he begins a small lecture (rant?) on girls and make up and nail polish and how it masks some health signs and makes doctors’ lives harder.
Then he tells me it looks like strep, does a culture and sends me off with an antibiotic prescription. Guess my throat didn’t look as good as my face.
I may have looked good on the outside, but that didn’t change the fact that I was a pretty sick puppy. I wasn’t surprised though, I could feel it, I knew I was sick.
Sometimes it is not that easy. Sometimes I look so good, I forget.
I forget that looking good is different from being good.
In fact, sometimes I think it’s all about appearances. What people see. But that doesn’t go very deep. And just like my strep, my inner junk is there and it isn’t going to get better by itself.
That’s the whole point of the gospel, the good news. I’m not going to get better by myself. I need a physician.
So God sent one, the great physician, his son Jesus. Jesus, who took all my sickness, all my inner junk on himself and gave me his health.
Last night I was reading Oswald Chambers’ My Utmost for His Highest….
What our Lord wants us to present to Him is not goodness, nor honesty, nor endeavour, but real solid sin; that is all He can take from us. And what does He give in exchange for our sin? Real solid righteousness. But we must relinquish all pretense of being anything, all claim of being worthy of God’s consideration.
God wants us to let him look deep inside. He wants us to show him the junk, the sickness, the strep, the sin. No putting your best foot forward, this isn’t about impressing God, that’s all pretense.
So if you’re operating under the impression that you are looking good, you might want to stop and examine yourself because…
Maybe it’s Jesus, but maybe it’s just Maybelline.