Sunday, May 21, 2006

real beauty

Stop and think for a moment - what is the most beautiful thing you have ever seen in your life. Can you think of it? I can think of beautiful moments. I distinctly remember sitting on the western side of a very small island in the middle of the canadian wilderness. The water had laid down like glass, the sky was bright orange, lit up from behind the clouds with the fading sun set, I was drinking a cup of black coffee and my sons were sitting around me watching the day end and the night begin.

Another beautiful think is the way my wife looks when she sleeps on vacation. When we are sleeping on vacation she seems to sleep better than at home. I remember one day while we were sleeping in the camper I awakened to see the sun rise and the light reflecting off her rested and beautiful face. I was like a symbol of peace.

I also think a beautiful moment was a time when our family was sitting around the table and somebody was acting up and we all started to laugh so hard that we had to push away from the table. laughing so hard that it got messy! I think that is kind of beautiful.

What is your moment of beauty?


Jedi PJ said...

For me it the day I realized that I’m the father I always wanted as a child. I spend time with my children, playing in the park and light sabers fights in the backyard at night time. (We did that last night for about 45 min and it was great) Telling them I love them as much as possible and teaching them the ways of the Lord. When I see my sons with happy faces knowing their dad is there for them and loves them it is the most beautiful thing I have even seen. People say they want to give their children what they did not have as a child. I think I’m actually doing that  Praise GOD!

Roger G said...

I will always remember this till I see my heavenly Father and thank him for this experience. I was in 3rd grade and leaning against a chain link fence playing 16" softball in left field. It was a perfect morning before school. The wind was blowing with the perfect breeze and perfect weather. As the wind was blowing it almost felt like the wind was running its fingers through my hair and although I didn't know God I knew there had to be a God. I believe it was God showing me his love in a way that I would never forget. That was about 38 years ago and I can still remember the feeling of being at peace and the emotion that was stirred up in my heart and mind. As I'm writing this it brings tears to me eyes.

Paul M. Harrison said...

I once told a friend that I thought nude women were the most beautiful thing in the world. "For me, looking at a female nude nurtures me, just like looking at a sunset." He said, "Oh yeah? When was the last time you got caught jerking off to a picture of a sunset?"

By all means, use this in a sermon.

To be fair, if we are going to submit that the existence of absurdity, evil, and suffering is powerful emotional evidence against belief in a good God, there is nothing like the experience of wonder in a song, in art, or in nature to bring you hope in the transcendent.

It is most confusing when they collide. There is a video online of a seal rolling around and playing in the water, getting sun and being adored by people in their boats. Suddenly a shark grabs it amidst it's play and it is blood and sheer terror at that point. Such is life.

I have a photo set of my girlfriend Kelly who is pure beauty, taken on a perfect spring day last year. It was one of the few days I felt anything at all in my nihilism. As nurturing as that day was, beauty in the natural realm is fleeting. She will fade to dust, as will my eyes, and the landscape is reserved for fire.

The before mentioned friend in this post is a man named Aaron Weiss, the vocalist in a band called mewithoutYou. He has a few lines in a song that says:

I threw a small stone down
And the image of my reflection in the water
Well it altogether disappeared
I burst as it shattered through me
Like a bullet through a bottle
And I'm expected to believe that any of this real

The idea is that everything in time and space is finite and has no integrity, only the transcendent source, God, who is eternal, has lasting beauty. In another song he says:

This whole material world seems to me like a newspaper headline that expressedly demands your attention and might even contain some truth. (but what's really going on here?)

The song ends saying, "One day, the water's gonna wash it away."

So everything seen and all of the beauty we can be nurtured by in this world will be no more. But to end on one last lyric from Aaron:

If ever You draw near
I'll hold up my own mirror
Lord, I can never show you anything as beautiful as You.

It seems to me that crediting nature for its own beauty just enslaves you to it, but looking through it to its Maker will nurture you (some Ravi there for ya).

Sometimes the world is enchanted and I believe, other times there seems to be nothing at all. I put my hope in Something.