If you're reading this blog, you know I've had long hair for quite some time. You're also probably somewhat aware of the fact that it's light brown and slightly wavy. If you've seen me in the past couple years, it's possible you'd recall that I often have a beard. I'd be surprised if you knew I have blue eyes and a somewhat longer nose, but for the sake of this entry, I'll throw those details out there too. So, what does one get when all these physical characteristics are put together?
OK, I get it. The western depiction of Jesus (particularly that of
Warner Sallman) bears a certain resemblance to my own appearance.
However, I still find it incredibly bizarre when people walk up to me in
public and ask, "Has anyone ever told you that you look like Jesus?" I
was asked that twice today, once by an older French couple and once by a
middle-aged black guy. It just seems a bit peculiar that so many people
are comfortable with asking a complete stranger if he is aware that he
resembles the savior of mankind. It should be pretty clear that if
you're comfortable asking someone that, others have probably done it
too. I'm always tempted to answer such questions with, "No... why?" but,
in the end, I never want to ruin their moment.
Probably the most jarring instance of this phenomenom that I can recall
took place in a Walgreen's in Aurora, IL. A cashier at a different line
first asked Amanda if she took care of my hair for me. (What?) She then
proceeded to inquire which church we attend, and after Amanda explained
that we didn't live there, she on her own offered up that I would make a
great Jesus at Christmas, and she would just curl up at my feet.
First of all, at Christmas, Jesus is a baby. More importantly, you just
told a stranger you'd like to curl up at his feet. That's weird! I could
be a complete creep! I could have said yes!
I guess overall though, it could be worse. If I'm going to be told I
look like someone, Jesus would be at the top of my list even if I didn't
look like popular portraits of him. Who's going to be mean to someone
who reminds them of Jesus? He's a pretty fly guy in most people's
opinion, regardless of whether or not they believe He died for their
sins and ascended to heaven three days later.
For those interested:
Popular Mechanics had a great article almost a decade ago that examined
what an average person from Jesus' time would have looked like: The Real Face Of Jesus
The New York Times then followed up on that article about a year later
and commissioned an artist to paint a version of that same model sans
the stupid look on his face: What Did Jesus Really Look Like?