My eyes were probably shining listening to that. Because it’s a definition I could really go along with.
There are, of course, many other definitions of success. A lot of them revolve around money, or power in one way or another. Trump has been making a big thing about ‘Making America Great Again’, but to me that begs the question ‘What is great?’ ‘What’s success?’
I’m fairly sure that Trump doesn’t think of shining eyes. He probably thinks of money and fame and power. That’s perhaps what makes his eyes shine, but he doesn’t measure success in terms of other people’s shining eyes.
But shining eyes are what you get when you connect with someone. When excitement and wonder and ‘Wow!’ is communicated from one person to another. When an idea sparks in someone’s mind and blazes out of them. It’s what Zander gets when he shows someone how powerful and wonderful classical music is. It’s what I hope I might get sometime (though I probably won’t get to see it) when I write something good and someone reads it and gets it and shines.
I’m reminded of Moses coming down from Mount Sinia, and according to the Bible, not just his eyes but his whole face was shining. (Exodus 34:29-35).
I’ve often read that without thinking much about it. If you asked me how it happened, I would have probably said ‘well, it’s God’s glory reflecting from off Moses’ skin. Or perhaps he was so exposed to it that it set of a sort of reaction in his face.’ Or if I’m feeling cynical ‘It was language chosen to impress future generations with what a great event this had been.’
And perhaps it was that. Or perhaps it was also a bit like the shining eyes thing. Perhaps being with God had opened Moses up to such wonder and glory and sheer 100 % pure ‘Wow’ factor that his whole being came alive with the thrill of it. So that his eyes shone, and his nose shone, and his cheeks shone and his entire face was literally shining with it.
His soul was filled with the light of God, and it poured out of him.
That’s what meeting with God does.
The inspiration of great music can light up your eyes. The inspiration of God can light up your entire face. Perhaps your whole life. A 1,000 watt light bulb moment, and after images that stay forever.