“Life is so ironic. It takes sadness to know what happiness is, noise to appreciate silence, and absence to value presence.” (weebly.com)
He had cancer…it had advanced to its final stage and there was nothing that could be done. I remember him in a wheelchair, bald from chemo, and yet always smiling. I was only a child and it was the first time in my life I saw God answer my prayers. Yes, he had answered them when I was afraid of coming storms or test results. But this was different, the doctors said he had only a month left, not enough to say goodbye. I prayed for him, asking God for time, and he kept living.. 2 months, 3 months…6 months went by, and then one peaceful evening he said goodbye, surrounded by his family, they said it was like he simply fell asleep.
When I remember this man I don’t feel sad, although I do wonder how things would have turned out if I would’ve prayed bigger, could he have been healed completely? All I know is that there comes a time in everyone’s life in which we must say goodbye. It is the one unavoidable truth, often feared and spoken of in whispers, as though the grim reaper was bending ear to hear. To a Christian though, death should hold no fear…so when I think of this man, I am filled with peace because I know that with every end, there is a new beginning. Heaven is the prize at our journeys end.
The truth is, it is during hardships that who we really are breaks through. So many people hide behind a false smile, burying their passions, hurt, and emotions deep within, believing that vulnerability is weakness, when in reality, we are all vulnerable and it takes true courage to admit it to ourselves and others. We can’t pretend away our brokenness, or sweep it under the rug.
There is beauty in our brokenness. We all need beauty in our lives, God made the world beautiful for a reason, with flowers of every color and fragrance, waterfalls, sunsets of red, orange, yellow and purple. Was God just showing off when he crafted the wings of a butterfly? Or just being creative when he decided that there should be seasons? I don’t think so..our God is righteous, pure, and beautiful, and so, being created in His image we too crave beauty in our lives. When it comes to physical beauty, we see through its fleetingness that God wants us to dig deeper into the heart of what true beauty is. Beauty is a matter of the heart.
Just as we are called to be joyful in all circumstances we are also called to find the beauty in every circumstance. Beauty and joy are correlated, as one can’t be experienced without the other. Just think of what brings a smile to your face….babies, nature, movies, art…the list goes on. You know what tops them all? Jesus giving his life for us….I find that beautiful.Is it also heartbreaking? yes, the pain he suffered was meant for us…a piece of us breaks when we realize all our savior did for us…..what is beautiful is his love. Sometimes beauty is the things we just can’t put into words, those moments of awe. Jesus loved us more than anyone has ever loved us….beautifully broken for us. What is more beautiful that love put to action?
God has been allowing me to see things through a different lense lately. The closer I draw to Him the more I see all the beauty around me. It is so important to stop and smell the roses sometimes…to simply walk with our God and be alone with Him. I think He created nature to do just that, to be a temple of peace and beauty that we can escape into at any time. Even Jesus went off into the wilderness at times to be with His father. I know life can be busy, the city lights often draw us in, and the daily chores can divert our attention. But the time we spend with God is irreplacable. And in those moments when we are too busy to go off and be with Him, ask Him to come along, He isn’t just in the wilderness but beside you, in your very heart. Being constantly aware of His presence will fill you with beauty and peace. If there is beauty in brokenness, there is beauty to be found in everything. Just open your eyes, and let Him show you.
“He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end.” -Ecclesiastes 3:11