When I think of beauty, I think of creation.
To take a walk down the street is to be a part of a grand masterpiece- a marvelous, animated painting of dancing leaves and bustling life all around. The trees alone sing the melody of their choosing, and the rest of the world joins in with various other sounds: the chirping of a squirrel, the crunch of your footsteps, the laughter of a child. In my eyes, this is beauty.
But today, I saw a different kind of beauty. It wasn’t a daisy, field of green grass, or even a smile on someone’s face. This was the beauty of a desperate, adoring heart.
He didn’t look like a worship leader, as we think of them today. He wasn’t wearing a button up; he didn’t have thick-rimmed glasses; he didn’t even have Clarks on his feet. Instead, he wore a grizzled face, a kind smile, and possessed a voice dedicated to God.
The songs that he used to lead our congregation into worship weren’t ones that I would’ve chosen. But I find myself challenged when a set list doesn’t consist of Bethel Music or newer indie worship music. And, whether we like to admit it or not, challenges bring growth and reflection.
The first song he lead was by Third Day. For a few moments, I could only reflect on how much I had heard the familiar tune as a child. But at some point, something changed. Not only did I sing along, but God knows that I couldn’t help but smile. I think it’s safe to say that that same smile didn’t leave my face for the majority of the service. The joy in my heart overflowed because I was in the presence of beauty. Today, I learned this: beauty is found in the reflection of love. The songs that this man sang were ones of adoration, and complete surrender. The words may have held a different meaning, but the song that his heart sang was no mystery.
Beauty is found in creation because creation is a manifestation of God’s love. In Stasi Eldredge’s book, Captivating, she writes on this. Another reference I love is this:
“I’d give anything to hear
You say it one more time,
That the universe was made
Just to be seen by my eyes.
With shortness of breath, I’ll explain the infinite
How rare and beautiful it truly is that we exist.” -Saturn, Sleeping at Last
God wants to romance us, and I believe that a lot of that comes in the form of creation. I feel so blessed with my sensitivity to beauty. If you ever feel unloved, look outside; see the intricacies of the natural world and say to yourself, “this is God’s gift to me.” The Creator gives to those he loves, and he has given you a beautiful world to look upon.
But just as this is beautiful, so is a desperate heart crying out to the Savior. They are both rooted in love, and I find that that is the essence of beauty.
I urge you to look for this is the world. Look for it in your relationships, in your blessings and provisions, in the mirror, and anywhere your feet may carry you.