Tuesday, October 22, 2013

beauty{full}: trash trucks

I'm going to keep this brief because I've been having massive amounts of heartburn all day today, and I think I'm finally done with it and just want to go to sleep. I'm also having hot flashes like nobody's business. There's nothing quite like waking up in the middle of the night drenched in sweat only to discover that the thermostat is set on 66. I'm sure the Man is really sad he's missing this--his equator girl normally likes the temperature at a slow roast.

Anyway, today was trash day. In our house, that's a big deal. The trash truck normally comes around breakfast time, and there's a mad scramble from the table to the kitchen window so we can watch the trash truck collect the contents of the bin. Generally, there are squeals of excitement from the boys and a desperate attempt from me to avoid letting Tiny's yogurt splattered self transfer his nastiness to me. The boys get such a kick out of it. I'm not saying that it's their favourite part of the day, but it's close. Seriously. They love that trash truck. They think it is awesome. In their minds, every day should be trash day. Need I say it? Somehow in their little boy brains, the trash truck is a thing of beauty.

This got me thinking. Are there other things that are really ugly (I mean, seriously: trash trucks are gross) that we have somehow relegated to the status of beautiful for one reason or another? In the case of the trash truck, the boys are endlessly excited by the giant claw that grabs our garbage bin and that is why it quantifies as beautiful. But what about, say, certain animals that are absolutely fascinating in their ugliness (naked mole rats, I'm talking about you)? Do they somehow become beautiful since they are just so darn interesting? I don't know.

But lately I have been thinking about something ugly that has been relegated to a place of beauty. In fact, many of us find it so beautiful that we put replicas of it on the walls of our home, on our jewelry, tattooed on our bodies: a cross.

Can anyone think of a modern day equivalent of the cross? An electric chair. Yep. How would you like a little gold electric chair to hang around your neck?

So, what's the deal? It would take something big, something very big for me to see an electric chair as anything but a means for execution. And that's what helps me understand the true impact of what Christ did on the cross. If it can so totally change the way we see a mode of execution, then surely something of incredible import has happened here. I think the truth is that when we look at the cross, we don't see a gallows or a guillotine or an electric chair: we see grace made flesh.

And it was no small grace. It was such an incredible, unbelievable, inconceivable grace (Christ
voluntarily giving his life for us) that it utterly obliterated the ugliness of the cross, transforming it into the ultimate symbol of beauty.

I think that beats out the trash truck, somehow.

{If you're looking for the rest of this series, all the links can be found here. Thank you so much for joining with me this month.}

1 comment:

  1. Truly the most beautiful of all -- may I never boast save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ! Enjoyed this and blessed by it too.