I look across in church and see a man
his shirt and trousers suggest he’s not in regular contact with a washing machine
the bulging bag beside him may be filled with most of his worldly possessions
his beard is more bush-chic than hipster trendy
his skin is worn and coloured with a life lived outside of comfort
I think he maybe smells
and I see his love filled eyes
and I see his weathered arms raised up without a care in worship
I see the way he cradles his bible like it is the very source of his life
and I am reminded of Jesus
Jesus, uninterested in possessions, or trends, or being in with the crowd, never preaching about making a good first impression, at home in the company of anybody
I look again at this man to my left –
clinging to the words of God like they are his daily bread
worshipping with all his heart unembarrassed by the judgement of others
nodding and agreeing loud with truth even if it doesn’t make him look cool
and I am blessed in church
not by the slick
not by the lights
not by the perfectly balanced sound
not by the witty statements
I am blessed by the man whose name I don’t yet know
the man who expresses so eloquently the kind of Christian I want to be – here,
right here with all his heart ready and longing to meet with Jesus,
not finding excuses to not get here,
not looking for things that need to be improved,
here hungry to meet, expecting to meet, once again with the God he loves.
And I want to look at my Bible the way that man looks at his, to cradle it with wonder, awe, expectation, delight. I want to hold it with the reverence I give to something that is the most precious and costly thing I own. I want to drink it all in like it holds the elixir to eternal life.
I want what he has and he blesses me.
I think he smells like Jesus.