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I'll Choose Beauty

Joanne Miller, artist, writer, teacher, and beautiful individual is our January guest blogger.

I like to play “What’s Interesting” with my grand kids. We will be on a walk, and I will ask them, “What do you see that is interesting or beautiful? Point it out and tell me why you think so.” They will look earnestly, searching for something that brings a smile and a thought. Then we discuss why that object or scene interests them. It’s a great way to create good conversation with a child but it is also a game that has become real to me lately in my own meanderings.

The photo above was taken with my iPhone while sitting in my favorite easy chair in the living room of our house. This time of year I have the Christmas decorations up and the lights twinkling on the tree all the time. I love to gaze at the colors, the sparkles, the special decorations and the beauty of it all put together, even though it is a 30+ year old tree that has branches missing and is more than a bit droopy. I can still make it look beautiful and I find the challenge quite rewarding.

Each year about this time I find myself thinking on a word I want to ponder for the New Year. A word that is meaningful to me and stands as a theme for whatever goes on in my life. This time around I think I will choose BEAUTY. It seems to be uppermost in my mind these days. Especially after a year of political upheaval, anger, frustration and criticism that has been so prevalent in our country….and in the world. I have seen and heard so much divisiveness this year and it saddens me to think that those emotions have tainted our view of the amazing world God has put before us to enjoy. No, I am not putting my head in the sand and pretending there isn’t any evil, corruption and craziness out there in the real world. But I am not going to allow all that negative energy to define my daily life. I plan to dwell on Beauty.

It’s there. Sometimes I have to search for it. But I can commit every day to finding Beauty in something that touches me in a way that defies description. In fact, I think I will keep a journal. 365 days of Beauty. I am positive that the reticular activation of dwelling on that word alone will reap rewards I haven’t begun to imagine. I challenge you to do the same. Look for the beauty in the ordinary. Look for the beauty that can come out of an event or circumstance that you didn’t expect or predict. Look around you from sky to ground and see something that draws you in, that makes you stop and listen or look or feel. Perhaps it will change the perspective you have on your life and the world around you. Happy New Year to you and may you find Beauty in the midst of any storm.

…….beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that he might be glorified.

Isaiah 61:3

Clarksville, TN

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