Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. 9 Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you. Philippians 4:8-9
The Basic Bible Truth
Our lives, when lived by God’ perfect example, should reflect Him to the world. When we focus on those things, the world will take notice of our walk. Our depth of character, our honesty, our genuine love and concern, are such a contrast to the norm for this world that when those traits are displayed, they are admired and envied. Our Christian walk should be a shining example to those with whom we rub shoulders each day. And as they look into our lives, may they see the beauty of God reflected in our hearts.
A Chatoyant Piece Of Wood
Chatoyancy is a word that is generally reserved for the world of gems and precious stones. If refers to the ability of a stone crystal to reflect and refract light in a beautiful way. Some hardwoods have grain characteristics that reflect light in unique ways, allowing the word to be used to describe the beautiful light refraction in the wood as well. The two pictures above are of the same board, but taken from slightly different angels. Notice the remarkable difference in the wood color and grain, simply because it is viewed from a different angle. This grain characteristic is often referred to as quilted or satin burl.
We live in an ever increasingly ungodly world. The downward spiral is stunning. All around us we see hate and anger. For the Christian, we must guard our hearts continually. Our sin nature will drag us down in a heartbeat if it can. Paul reminds the church at Philippi to look for the good and focus on it. The truth is, you become what you indulge yourself in. Our constant attention upon things that are of a holy origin will result in our lives looking different than that of the rest of the world. I tell my employees that anyone can be normal and average. It takes a bit of effort to excel and be noticed. A Christian life modeled after God’s values will stand out to the people that we rub shoulders with each day.
The unsaved world is anxiously looking for fulfillment. They look for something to fill that God-shaped void in their life. Without God there is misery and heartache. Sin will always eventually bring them to their knees. And if there is a Christian modeling Christ like attitudes and behaviors nearby, they will look closer at this strange sight and wonder.
We are called to be a peculiar people. I once knew a gentleman who took that King James wording a little to literally and decided that he would indeed be a peculiar person and that it would be a Godly trait in his life. And believe me, he was peculiar. Imagine being invited over for supper after church on Sunday evening and discovering that supper was simply popcorn and water. That was not the most peculiar part of the evening. As his wife went about her duties in the kitchen preparing the “meal”, his guests sat around in the living room and watched him remove his shoes and socks and proceed to clip his toe nails as he talked to everyone there. It was uncomfortable, to say the least, but perfectly peculiar as he defined the term.
Peculiar, as God defines the term, is to be unique, intriguing, and interesting—something to be desired. Our lives should reflect the beauty of Christ to those we come in contact with each day. We may not have to say a word. Our actions speak louder anyway.
Hardwood is an excellent building material. Most hardwood is average or below in quality. But a few boards stand out from the rest. The burls and satin grains, the mineral streaking and character grains, or the quilted and fleck grains, are all technically defected, but beautiful in their appearance. Many have chatoyant qualities that are breathtakingly beautiful. The Christian, likewise, is a seriously flawed individual. But their relationship with God at the core of their being, creates in them a resilience to life’s problems and difficulties. And those looking on in wonder will admit, if they are honest, that they, too, would like to have that same confidence and peace.
May the world see the beauty of Christ living in us—chatoyancy.