As I was walking up to the church this morning my eye fell upon the flowers around the walkway. These black-eyed susans, coneflowers and the wispy purple flowers have had my attention all summer long. They have been simply glorious! Today I notice the flowers are fading. The coneflowers petals are droopy and dropping and the wispy purples are more lavender in color. And yet they are still beautiful but in a different way. I actually like the way the brown cones pop on the top of the coneflower stems and the wispy purples are all the more delicate. The black-eyed susans are still vibrant but they soon will take on another kind of beauty as we move into the fall. I remember one year I left some of my flowers into the winter and thought them quite striking with a skiff of snow to cover them. “Beauty is in the eye of the beholder,” the saying goes. I wonder if sometimes we need to take a second look at the world around us to behold a new beauty when a previous beauty had faded.
The same can be said of our lives. Some seasons of life are just gobsmacking spectacular! The joy in our days is easy to embrace and we do so with great pleasure. Some seasons are mundane, normal days. We go about our business and do well to notice the moments of beauty and glory within the “every day.” Other seasons of life are hard. Life is full of challenge and we struggle to see any roses, let alone pause to smell them. It is in these days that we might need to work harder to see a bit of beauty in the midst of our struggle. Beauty is still there, but we don’t see it through our muddy glasses of discomfort. Perhaps a friend can help us to see. Perhaps the friend is the bit of beauty before us.
In all the seasons of our lives, God invites us is to look for the beauty of God’s love around us. I think we do this best with companions on the journey with us.
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