Saturday, December 16, 2006

On Tinted Spectacles

These musings are brought to you by a "random" reference to rose-colored spectacles that I heard on the radio while driving earlier today :).

Perhaps you have, like me, heard the old addage about people hopelessly in love seeing things through "rose-colored glasses," or something along those lines. I've heard this refer to two different things: (1) an optimistic view of the world in general or (2) an optimistic view of their lover in particular. People in love tend to see each other in a rather optimistic, often unrealistic light, you might say. Love covers over a multitude of flaws ;-). Being a recovering hardcore cynic, I've been known in the past to roll my eyes at people who definitely seem to support the idea that "love is blind."

But one thing I've been pondering over the past several months is that there is a nugget of the Gospel in the silly blindness of lovers. Remember, human romance is merely a small picture of the Greatest Romance of all time: the romance between Christ and His church. If there ever was a lover who overlooked His bride's faults, it was Christ. He promised to remember our sins no more. Christ typifies "love is blind." He perfects it. He shows fallen humans what it truly means to love unconditionally and what it means to look upon His bride with great joy, overlooking her faults.

But, of course we must keep in mind that Christ does not merely cover His ears and hum in a vain attempt to "think positively" about His bride. He forgives and forgets our faults because He died to cover them. Ignoring our faults would not have been a sweet sentimental thought on His part; Christ went beyond sentimentalism and provided a way for us to be delivered from our faults. That is true love!

So how does this apply in human relationships? Well, first of all, we are commanded to spur one another on to love and good deeds. Just as Christ showed His love for the church by purifying Her, so we are to show love to our fellow Christians by exhorting them. And husbands are to be a type of Christ to their families (I don't envy you, men!). But also, as men and women, we look at each other through colored glasses - grace-tinted spectacles. The love that provided a way to forgive our sins is the same love that provided a way to forgive the sins of our brothers and sisters in Christ. We mess up big time (understatement of the year!), and Christ forgives us. So when our fellow Christians sin against us, the Gospel of Grace allows us to forgive them and remember their sins no more. Wow.

So in a sense, Christians are commanded to be silly lovers, and look at their fellow Christians through colored glasses - grace-tinted spectacles. How do we do that? By grace. The grace of God that forgave us is the same grace that allows us to forgive our brothers and sisters in Christ. Amen!


Adrian C. Keister said...

This is an absolutely wonderful post you have here, Susan! I like. ;-)] About the only thing I would add is that grace-tinted spectacles (is that original with you? It's brilliant!) tend to transform the person viewed with them, rather like in quantum mechanics when observing something changes the something.

In Christ.

MG said...

Adrian, I think you're the only one I know who would bring quantum mechanics into this. ;-) You do crack me up. Joe said, "Well, he's unique......except for the fact that he's an identical twin." Hehe.

Susan said...

As far as I know, "grace-tinted spectacles" is original with me, Adrian. I'm glad you like :). I thought the quantum mechanic analogy was good, albeit geeky. *grin* It's very true, certainly. For example, behind most emotionally-adjusted women, there is a loving father, and behind most confident men there is a supporting wife.

Anonymous said...

I was reading this post thinking, "Adrian's going to like this." ;-) I was right!
I liked it too. Very much.

Lydia said...

This was a truly AMAZING post! It was such a blessing and a timely read for me. I have recently come into the need to see certain others through these "grace-colored spectacles."

Thank you, Susan, for exalting the glory of the Gospel while presenting a balanced view of grace and judgment.

This is definitely going into "linking status" on my blog. :)

God bless your grace-filled life.

Susan said...

Thank you for the encouragement, Lydia. . . and Sister Dear. It is so neat when a blog post happens in a timely fashion. Surely providence, not chance!

Adrian C. Keister said...

Reply to Mrs. G.

Hmm. Perhaps I need a bit more quantum uncertainty in my life. I'm getting too predictable! I'm glad you enjoy my antics, in any case. In return (or is that retort?) your husband cracks me up. His comment is more or less along the lines of, "He's unique except and precisely insofar as he isn't." Which reminds me of, I think it was Eddington, who summarized Newton's First Law as the following: "Objects always move in straight-line uniform motion, except insofar as they don't."

Reply to Susan.

Liked your symmetric analysis of men and women and people being behind them. And thank you for giving me the compliment of calling me "geeky." Quite an honor, to be sure. :-)]

Reply to Hannah.

You're getting to know me too well. I'll have to do something about that. ;-)]

In Christ.

Anonymous said...

Great post, Susan! I am praying for the ability to see my fellow Christians through grace-tinted spectacles!