Thursday, July 21, 2016

On Beauty Made

It is covered with a cloth to keep dust from collecting on the threads.
But when I remove the cloth, I always have the sense that I have just uncovered something special.
From the glistening pins, to the delicate lace threads and on down to the bobbins, it is almost magical.
Something to behold, to wake up my senses.

Every time I uncover my lace pillow, I have to just stop a moment and admire it.

Every single time.

And I know that when someone else is watching, the reaction will be the same.

Bobbin lace is the fairy tale of the needle arts.

I have talked about bobbin lace and lace bobbins before.
How bobbin makers in England decorated their bobbins in ways no others did.
They made what most would consider a common tool into a work of art.

Each lace bobbin unique.

Some were inscribed with names and dates, some inspired by English architecture and some with romantic phrases.  They were adorned with beads and tinsel. And you know that each one was a treasured possession of the lacemaker.

A lacemaker's pillow could contain her whole life's history represented by the bobbins there.

A lace pillow filled with bobbins can nearly take your breath away..

But a lacemaker is not content to admire the beauty of the lace pillow.
She uses the bobbins and the thread and pins to make more.
More beauty.

She makes lace.

She uses beautiful things to make beautiful things.

Because we all can appreciate beauty.

And because we like beauty, 
we take the time and put forth the effort to make beauty in our surroundings.

We make these little displays of beauty.
A vase gets placed here, a picture there.
We decorate the place we live. The place we call home.
Creating art out of ordinary.

Oh, we may say we aren't creative, but it's just not true!

We actually create in lots of different ways.

Arranging things on a desk, or combining new ingredients into a delicious meal.
Singing a lullabye to hush an anxious child.

We all have inside of us a pull to create, to make beauty.

I think this pull to create goes back to our own Creator.

In the beginning God MADE...
And it was good.

He made it all.
And He made it all to delight us.
From small so small we can't see it with our eyes,
to large so large it's hard to imagine.

And it's important to realize this one thing.

The Creator is the one who defines beauty in His making.
And it is for one reason.

So that we will look for the Creator.

And we will find Him.

Because of His great love for us.

And it makes me wonder.

Since we are made in His image, could the purpose behind our urge to create be this as well?
To extend our love to others?

We plant flowers, write stories, fluff pillows. and surround ourselves with music.
And in our creating we are showing our love to others.

And in showing our love, do we help them to see His?

When we make beauty, are we also showing a glimpse of His love?


How do you define it?

How do you respond to it?
Wonder?  Awe?  Praise?

Who do you acknowledge when you see it?

I recently watched a video of color blind people seeing color for the first time.
The expressions of awe on their faces can't be imitated.

There is a word for it.
It's "wonder".

We experience it when we receive a gift from someone who loves perfectly.
In the myriad hues of a flower picked by a child,
the far reaching beams of light in sunrise as it reaches out across the horizon,
the swaying branches of a delicate willow moved to dance by the gentlest of breezes
the awe we see as a child hears their mother's voice the first time


Things we feel when we see a "soldier comes home" surprise,
or of kittens seeing their reflections

When a child gets tickets to Disney or news of an upcoming sibling.

When we are shown how a young man in love offers an invitation to someone to join him in life...
and the tenderness of it moves us to tears.


Beauty brings that kind of response.

i hope i never lose my own sense of awe
of wonder
at the love of the Father
in the gift of His Son
or the grace revealed in each moment by His Spirit.

I want to enjoy every moment of His grace.
I hope I will get to the point when I stop ever taking them for granted.

I don't want to miss a beat...
A child's voice in song...
The smell of salt water in the air...
The kindness of a stranger...
Crickets in harmony...
Morning joys...
Bird song...
Coffee's aroma...
Traffic noise...

the way a car stirs up dust on a dirt road.

The way freckles scatter across his nose.

Wonder at His creation, and His love for me.

His love for each and every one of us.

Join me?


We can make our surroundings more beautiful in so many ways...

Decorating our environment with kindness.  
Filling the space where we live with the sounds of gentle discourse and of beautiful music.

With inviting smells of coffee brewing or something yummy in the oven.

By making the place we call home more comfy and inviting.

We miss the point if all we do is create beauty for our own enjoyment.

By reflecting our own Maker in the things we do.
Showing all those He loves that they are worthy of our love as well.

And sometimes by placing a vase in just the right place.

How do you make beauty?

Psalm 27:4
I have asked one thing from the Lord; it is what I desire:
to dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life,
gazing on the beauty of the Lord, and seeking Him in His temple.

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