My wife, Terry, is, oh, most certainly, a very beautiful woman. She had a birthday one day this week. She turned sixty-four years old. But, from where I stand, she still looks real good to me.
We were waiting to go out on a birthday date. I was at my work desk when she came down the steps. She stopped and asked, “Well—how do I look, Branchie?”
I took a quick glance, and glibly responded with, “You look very nice, Terry.”
I got up and walked into the kitchen. I picked up the newspaper to read before we left. I like reading the paper. It covers local news very well in particular. Terry followed, and sat down to read the part I had finished. Handing it to her, my eyes suddenly became enamored with her, and I took a long gaze at her. Her radiant appearance inspired passion as I reached to take her hand.
“Great time of day, Woman!” I exclaimed. “You do indeed look good!”
The moment was interrupted by a happy-birthday call from one of the boys. As she hung up, one of the other boys called her, and, while she talked, I kept on looking.
When the second call ended, I said, “You just cannot help it, can you?”
“Help what?” she asked with a wry smile.
“You just cannot help being absolutely gorgeous.”
“Well, you did not seem to take much notice there at the steps,” she said.
“You are right,” I replied. “I did not take the take time to take a good look. But, now I am, and I am enjoying what I see!”
Suddenly, there was another interruption. But, this time it involved a biting spiritual truth. Quickly, I got a scratch piece of paper, and scribble down the words that had come to mind, “Take the Time to Take a Good Look.”
The catch goes like this: when it comes to Jesus Christ, this is strongly suggestive of a failure of our daily lives, for we often stop short of taking a good look at how the Lord is ministering to us. We may glibly acknowledge Him when we say grace over a meal. We glibly acknowledge Him when we say a prayer in the morning or at night. We glibly acknowledge Him when we attend worship.
But, when is the last time that we took the time to take a good look at Him?
Where the Scripture takes us and shakes us by the spiritual shoulders is found in the words of Apostle John, who wrote about the Lord, “And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us (and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father), full of grace and truth.” In his first epistle, John wrote again concerning Jesus “that we have seen Him with our eyes,” and that “we have looked upon Him.”
John is indicating that he, the disciples, and other believers took occasion to take a good look at Jesus. With their looking, they carefully contemplated the Lord, who He was, and what He was going to do.
Furthermore, the writer of the Book of Hebrews wrote, “Looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith…” “Looking” means to “look away from one thing so as to see another; to concentrate the gaze upon.” To concentrate the gaze upon requires that we take the time to take a good look. Too many times, however, we are concentrating upon the materialistic matters of life. At other times we are concentrating upon the problematic matters of life.
All the while, we miss out on the blessings of the spiritual depths of Jesus Christ when we do not take the time to take a good look at Him. The Lord is very special, and He presents Himself to us as such. We should be mindful not to overlook Him.
In the mean time, I gave Terry a happy birthday card with a dollar bill in it. Dollar bills on birthdays is kind of a tradition among us. I told her not to spend it all in once place.
Pastor Ron Branch lives in Mason County and is pastor of Hope Baptist Church, Middleport, Ohio.