When I was completing my undergraduate degree in elementary education, one of my courses required each of us to create a collection of poetry for children. Of course, the result would also provide each of us with a resource for a future classroom. That collection in a wooden covered “book” still sets on one of my bookshelves. It is a treasure trove!
There are many poems in it that still resonate with me. It is also true that many of these poems are as significant for adults as for children.
One of my many favorites is a poem by Rachel Field entitled “Some People”. It continues to illustrate a powerful observation and as I was reading my scriptures for today, the poem came to mind again. Let me share it with you.
Isn’t it strange some people make
You feel so tired inside,
Your thoughts begin to shrivel up
Like leaves all brown and dried!
But when you’re with some other ones,
It’s stranger still to find
Your thoughts as thick as fireflies
All shiny in your mind!
I so agree with Rachel Field’s words and description!
I most enjoy being with people like those described in the second stanza of the poem. They bring energy, refreshment, and passion into any conversation. (None of us are always that way, but if we are never that way???) I am also aware I desire to be that kind of person to others as well.
I think that can really only happen when the Lord and I are intimately connecting and He is growing me in Him and opening my eyes to see possibility and open doors that I would miss too often without Him.
When I am spending time with Him, personal intimate time with Him, I think it should show and be evident but not because I tell someone I have been with Him.
The connection of the poem to my scripture reading today came from two passages I was reading. The first passage was in 2 Corinthians 3:12-18. I often read a passage in more than one translation. Today The Message translation arrested my attention near the end of the passage noted. It reads as follows:
“All of us! Nothing between us and God, our faces shining with the brightness of his face. And so we are transfigured much like the Messiah, our lives gradually becoming brighter and more beautiful as God enters our lives and we become like him.”
I felt as if the Lord was highlighting this part and challenging me about what I reflect. Unlike Moses who veiled his face so the Israelites could not see when the shine faded after he had met with the Lord, we speak to the Lord face-to-face and the Holy Spirit keeps us in communion with Him daily versus periodically as it was with Moses.
I am not suggesting I (or any of you) should go around daily with a photographic smile plastered on my face. I’m sure you know what I mean.
Nevertheless, if I am spending time with the Lord in communion with Him, something of Him should be reflected in me.
That reflection may be in my demeanor, my attitude, my speech, my imagination, my creativity, my peace, my love, and so on. I think it is what would make others hungry or thirsty to know what the source of that reflection was.
A bit later as I was reading in Proverbs 4:18-19 the theme seemed to connect again from The Message translation especially:
“The ways of right-living people glow with light; the longer they live, the brighter they shine. But the road of wrongdoing gets darker and darker—travelers can’t see a thing; they fall flat on their faces.”
I don’t think the Lord would want me to pretend or wear a mask or disguise to try to suggest He and I are in communion with one another. That lack of integrity is far too often tried by many and results in so many wounds and marring of Christ’s image that can actually turn people away from Him if we proclaim to be His disciples.
If I am spending time with Him, even though I am imperfect and shot through with humanity, I think He was reminding me that it will and should show.
I should also be more like those in the second stanza of Rachel Field’s poem. Something living and vibrant of His life in me through the Holy Spirit should be reflected in me.
This isn’t new news, but it is the Holy Spirit reminding me that each day I reflect something or someone. I reflect the gospel or I don’t. The reflection comes more from my behavior, my attitude, and my demeanor than from my words.
Who am I reflecting?