Looking for Beauty

“In all ranks of life the human heart yearns for the beautiful; and the beautiful things that God makes are his gift to all alike.” – Harriet Beecher Stowe

I know people who choose a word for the new year and focus on it for their personal and spiritual growth. I haven’t done that – at least not until this new year. A word came to mind that has followed me like a lost puppy for a few weeks now. So I guess I’ll have to keep it! The word is beauty.

I believe God designed us to be drawn to the beautiful. He lures our hearts with what is attractive. I had an artistic friend who once told me I should surround myself with beautiful things. I took that to heart, but now I’m realizing I don’t have to put beautiful things in my path, they are already there. I just have to look.

This year I am looking for beauty in . . .

. . . the natural world.

. . . the arts.

. . . God’s Word.

. . . God’s character.

. . . other people.

. . . my own soul.

It seems that the most captivating kind of beauty is that which is inside a person. There are people we may not be drawn to because of physical beauty, but there is something in their soul that attracts us: Something deep in their being that seems right and good and beautiful. I’m looking for that kind of beauty as I go about my day today. Want to join me?

“. . . whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.” – Philippians 4:8b

Pennies on the Path

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“I cannot cause light. The most I can do is to put myself in the path of its beam.”                                    – Annie Dillard

I had an uncle who lived at the other end of a well-worn path between my Grandmother’s house and his. When he knew the grandchildren were coming to visit, he showed up at Grandma’s door, too. Then he would invite one of us to walk with him on the path to his house. As we walked, we were amazed to find pennies all along the way. Even when I became a young adult and Uncle Walt was gone, I couldn’t resist looking for pennies when I walked that path!

I believe God has taken great delight in putting “pennies” on the path we will walk today. One author calls God’s sometimes unnoticed gifts as “small joys and pieces of beauty”. How many of them do we miss because we are not paying attention? We are watching our feet or worried about the obstacles ahead and missing God’s little gifts along the way.

As we enter this new year, let’s have enough faith in our loving heavenly Father to believe that He has “small joys and pieces of beauty” for us every single day. Then, let’s remember to look for them. If we do, 2016 will be a year filled with surprises, smiles, and praise. Personally, I can’t wait to see what’s next on the path!

“Surely goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life.” (Psalm 23:6a NIV)