This one is better than last night's, I promise.
We were at K's grandma's for her birthday dinner today, and K's parents gave her two new Betta fish, a male and a female. If you don't know what a Betta fish looks like, stop reading now. Find a picture online, then come back. It will help.
The male, of course, is stunning. Vibrant dark blue and red with long, flowing fins. He's flashy, glamorous, fascinating.
The female, as is often the case in nature, is dull by comparison. A shimmery silver-grey color with clipped fins, the only apparent connection to her male counterpart is a smattering of red and blue on her tiny appendages. The two fish are in a single container with a divider down the middle, as the males tend to be cannibalistic. When the two approach each other on either side of the clear plastic divider, the male struts his stuff, fluttering his side fins boldly and making a general show. The female reflects his magnificence. Her silver sides turn rosy pink or smoky blue, depending on the angle.
It makes a great analogy. Christ, the bridegroom, is magnificent in his beauty. Fiery and brilliant, He lacks nothing. We, His bride, pale in comparison. While we might be considered marginally attractive in isolation, we are nothing next to His glory. Yet, when we draw near to Him, the reflection of His vibrance makes our simple scales glow with reflected glory and we are made beautiful.