2 Corinthians 4:7 – But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us. (NIV)
2 Corinthians 2:15-16 – For we are to God the aroma of Christ among those who are being saved and those who are perishing. To the one we are the smell of death; to the other, the fragrance of life. (NIV)
When a holiday or birthday approaches, I spend a lot of time choosing the right box and the right kind of paper, ribbon, and labels to wrap gifts for my grandchildren. I would never consider wrapping a birthday gift in Christmas wrapping paper. Neither would I put a pink bow on a boy's gift or a blue one on a girl's gift. To me, there is significance in these decoration items. I want the package to be wrapped appropriately to convey my message of love.
The recipients couldn't care less. What is inside the box is what is important to them. The moment the gift is in their hands, they snatch the bow, tear the paper, and squish the box, eager to see what is inside. That is the item that matters.
Paul says that we have within us the treasure of "the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ" (2 Corinthians 4:6 NIV). He refers to our bodies as "jars of clay". No matter how we adorn the body with wrappings and bows, it is nothing compared to the incredible message of the gospel and God's good news of forgiveness and life forever. Just as the gift within the package is what is important to the grandchildren, the gift we have within our "jars of clay" is what is important. It is not our looks, no matter how well adorned and genetically blessed we are. It is what is inside of us, what we have become in Christ, that is the important ingredient.
Prayer: Lord, give us the insight to see the value of the inner person, rather than the beauty of the outer person and its expensive adornment. Your light can shine from within the plain and humble face of one who loves and lives according to Your Word. Amen.