On my way home a couple of weeks ago I was listening to a National Public Radio talk show called This American Life. This episode featured an interview with a man who, for medical reasons, had quit producing testosterone. It was a couple of months before the doctors diagnosed the problem and began replacing the hormone, but in the meantime the man experienced some very interesting symptoms.
As the testosterone left his body, so did all of this man’s ambition and competitiveness. It was nothing for him to sit on his bed for three or four hours at a time, not bored or sad or lazy, but just inert, content to look at the wall. This man began to enjoy monotony. He was happy to eat Wonderbread and drink milk for every meal—in fact, he wanted his food to be bland.
One of the side effects that this man experienced is truly remarkable. He started noticing everything. It was as if his filters that helped keep him from being distracted were lifted, and now he saw everything, everything with equal emphasis. As he walked down the street, he would notice the streetlight telling him to go or stop, but he would equally notice the grass growing out of the crack in the sidewalk and the bolt holding the wheel onto the car. He believes that he saw them objectively, without judgment, as they really are. Without testosterone, he saw the world without emotion, without sentimentality. And so, for those two brief months, he saw the world as it really is. Without passion and desire clouding his sight, he saw clearly, rightly.
And as he saw the world as it really is, he kept thinking, “That is beautiful.” That grass coming through the sidewalk is beautiful. That lug bolt is beautiful. And not in a sentimental way, but in an objective, factual way. The things he saw were in and of themselves beautiful. He thinks that for a brief time, he saw the world as God sees it.
I think he’s right. I think that God looks at this creation that he made and thinks, “That is beautiful.” God looks at things and sees them for what they are—what they really are. And God sees that they are beautiful.
This doesn’t stop with grass growing from the sidewalk and lug bolts. God looks at you and sees you for who you are—who you really are. He sees the good and the bad, everything that makes you, you. God looks at you and says, “You are beautiful.”
And you are.