Oh, the Beauty
It’s amazing how God uses the seemingly most insignificant moments to speak with you. I was in an Uber last week headed to physical therapy casually chopping it up with my driver. As we are pulling away from my neighborhood, he continuously says, “oh, the beauty”. It took me a minute to realize he was talking about the house I called my home. The house that sheltered me from frightful weather. The house that offered comfort after earth shattering loss. The house that supplied me with bountiful laughs from loved ones. I had forgotten just how much beauty I had to be thankful for.
It’s easy to marvel at the new and shiny things God pushes our way, but what about the items long forgotten? How can I live a life filled with gratitude for all the things I did not have to ask God for? It amazes me how at times I still trip over God’s power in my life. Even if only for a moment, I forget who I serve and just what He is capable of doing in the world.
I’ve been talking candidly about my walk with God and how the experience is shaping me.
Honestly, I forget to acknowledge the presence of God’s grace in my daily routine like the everyday tasks that are often overlooked. So many things I’ve taken for granted failing to realize that I only have it because of what God has allowed. What would my life look like if I fully understood and believed in the beauty I witness each day at the hands of God?
It’s easy to look back on what God has done in my life, but I still find it hard to trust Him in the moment. I was baptized recently and the devil was beating down my door by the next day. I felt defeated and targeted by a foe who has made their nagging presence known many times before. What if I decided to focus on my current situation from a lens of faith versus that of fear? I often have to remind myself that the devil is busy, but God works overtime.
Oh, the beauty. Oh, the beauty. I imagine now what doors could open and what outlooks could change if I decided to marvel at the beauty. It’s hard to remain hopeful when it seems like we are living in such wild times. It’s hard to see the beauty in the world when kids are kept in cages and people who look like me are senselessly murdered without consequence. It’s in moments like this that I begin to collect the ashes. I collect the grief, trauma, distractions, and overall pain into my hands and push it away until it’s time to add to my stash.
For the longest time I believed holding on to the not so beautiful parts of my life would miraculously transform them into something else. This is partially true, but that’s up to God. God gives us all the chance to exchange our growing pile of ashes for beauty. The key to this equation is allowing God the room to do His thing. It’s easy to be weighed down by the proverbial luggage you carry, but at some point you have to leave it behind.
God wants us to have an attitude like my Uber driver had last week. He wants us to look at whatever the day holds and be able to confidently proclaim, “oh, the beauty”. I’m not there yet and I don’t know when I’ll arrive, but I pray for that type of belief.
There are so many times I’ve impatiently waited on God to make a move. So many times I’ve sought out His guidance only to be placed on hold. So many times I’ve questioned His hand when I wasn’t fully confident of His presence. I was asking Him to fill me up with more of Him and He was begging me to make room.
God is fully aware of our personal struggles. I wanted to know Him and see the beauty, but I was captivated by everything in the background. God is fully capable of doing complete makeovers on His own, but He tasks us with being willing participants.
Imagine going to a makeup artist and requesting a full face. You’d probably be pretty upset if your skin wasn’t prepped for the treatment as the artist piles on loads of makeup. Their intention was to further beautify you, but they failed to remove what had already been there. Most people will tell you that makeup is best applied to fresh, clean skin.
Similar to your favorite makeup artist, God knows that His work is best done when we wipe away all the “stuff” from yesterday. His work is best magnified when we allow Him to have a fresh and clean foundation. Take a moment today to retrieve the ashes you’ve stored within the sacred walls of your spirit and give them to God. I hope that you’re able to look at what you receive in exchange and say, “oh, the beauty”.