January 5, 2009
Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Matthew 6:25
So, do you look good? How is that for a loaded question?
The truth is, most people do their best to look good when they go out. Now, according to an article carried by MSNBC, some folks are carrying "looking good in public" to some pretty serious extremes.
These folks really want to look good -- even at their funeral.
Understand, we're not talking about the kind of looking good a funeral director might normally do to make the deceased look presentable, natural, and at peace. Nor are we talking about the kind of major restoration that is necessary after a devastating illness or disfiguring accident.
According to the article, some folks want the mortician to roll back the calendar, remove all the wrinkles, lift up the saggy parts, and make them better than new.
As one plastic surgeon said, "Society is unfortunately getting more and more vain . . . (now, people) want to look good in their casket. It'll be one last time to show off their new outfit and their plumped lips."
Jesus knew the phylactery flaunting Pharisees of His day would have understood. They would have understood, but not necessarily agreed. Now Jesus had no problem with looking good, but He wanted to make sure people had their priorities in order.
That's why He told His followers not to worry about looks, food, or clothes. Instead, He encouraged them to "seek first the Kingdom of heaven" (Matthew 6:33a).
The Savior who gave His life so we might have eternal life wanted to make sure we were prepared spiritually for our entry into heaven and not so much for our physical exit from this world.
In truth, if Jesus is our Redeemer, Forgiver, and Friend, we will be ready for both.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord Jesus, unless Your return comes soon, I will someday be dying. May I, by Your great grace, be ready for the moment when I leave this world and enter the next. And, dear Lord, if it be possible, let the lost also seek first the Kingdom of heaven. In Your Name. Amen.
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries