The early version
A later model
. . . With a fair amount of water over the dam in between.
A person’s looks seldom improves with age. Weight goes up, value goes down, and the manufacturer’s warranty is sometimes voided. Hair changes color, wrinkles resemble topographic maps, and body profile can be . . . um, picturesque.
Our culture spends a lot of time and money trying to be beautiful. And for good reason. Beautiful people are sought after, noticed, and affirmed. And it starts early. When our first granddaughter was born, daughter-in-law Heidi—a beautiful person in every way—arrived shortly, and baby Naomi, only a few hours old, responded to her in a subtle but distinctly positive way. An AHA! moment.
Beauty, though, is deceptive, and I have learned to mistrust beautiful people—male or female. They seldom have to work at relationships. Beautiful people gain a following without ever needing to prove themselves. Empty beauty can be a dangerous thing.
Knowing this, I have learned to look into a person’s soul, so to speak. Bodies change; souls don’t. I try to read faces (beautiful or otherwise), voice, body language, likes and dislikes, attitude, outlook. These things speak truth far more authentically than cosmetics do. One of the most important people in my life was probably right up there with ugly, but she had a soul of beauty, and to this day I still marvel at all she managed to inject into my life.
What will I look like when I’m old? I’ve never been a beautiful person, but I’ve been told I smile well. Hopefully, the God who dwells in the inner space of my heart will allow HIS beauty to flow—not through my topographically challenged face, but through my smile—right down to the very end.
The early version