Beauty matters

Excertp from Dr. Weber’s blog. Why Beauty Matters for Balance Against Brokenness

We teeter on the edge of freedom and fear.

Dealing only with broken pieces keeps us deprived, holds us back. The beauty is too extravagant. I can’t justify it. It’s unrealistic, unreachable. I can’t enjoy it because it’s overshadowed by the darkness and brokenness.

That’s why Jesus came. His love and beauty set us free.

He brings light into our darkness. He makes beauty from ashes.

And only the Spirit of God can release us, open our eyes and hearts to see all that Christ is, what He provides for us through the Cross. What He promises to do in us, in the new Heaven and the new earth – is goodness and beauty. Images of fresh flowing rivers, life-giving fruitful trees, no more pain and tears – instead peace, love and laughter.

Beauty matters. The beauty of Christ’s transforming life in us matters.

We can’t escape the pain, darkness, brokenness and vandalizing.

But then we open our lives to the Holy Spirit, holding on to our visions of God paying the price, transforming and empowering us now and finally making the whole of creation anew – with love, joy, peace, hope – and beauty.

 

Henri Nouwen reminds us that “every time we show compassion to a suffering person, every time we arrange a bouquet of flowers, offer care to tame or wild animals, prevent pollution, create beauty in our homes and gardens … we are making the vision come true…Whenever it comes alive in us we will find new energy to live it out, right where we are….this beautiful vision gets us involved.”

 

Live out the Beauty.

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Lent – 40 Day Journey of God’s Renewal

“Aren’t you, like me, hoping that some person, thing, or event will come along to give you that final feeling of inner well-being you desire? Don’t you often hope: ‘May this book, idea, course, trip, job, country or relationship fulfill my deepest desire.’ But as long as you are waiting for that mysterious moment you will go on running helter-skelter, always anxious and restless, always lustful and angry, never fully satisfied. You know that this is the compulsiveness that keeps us going and busy, but at the same time makes us wonder whether we are getting anywhere in the long run. This is the way to spiritual exhaustion and burn-out. This is the way to spiritual death.”
 ― Henri J.M. Nouwen, Life of the Beloved: Spiritual Living in a Secular World

There is something beautiful about the 40 days of Lent. There is peace. joy. giving. love. All that makes up the characteristics of God Almighty. There is nothing sweeter than the presence of God. Daily Bible Reading. Staying Connected to Him in prayer throughout the day. I love talking to him about everything and knowing that he cares about everything that concerns me.

I’m willing to give up the things that are wasteful and useless and in place draw closer to him without all the noise that fills up my days.

Lent for me is a time of surrender, giving it all up for the One Who gave His Life for me. It is a time of renewal, reflection of what Christ did for me and mankind.

It is more than just not eating certain things or doing certain tasks, it is depending on him for all that my heart desires.

It’s a time to check my heart condition and I’m not talking about the physical heart but the emotions the conditions of my soul.

It is a time of me giving my pains, disappointments to God and asking him to heal me and fill me with his love because nothing else will do.

It is a time of letting go and letting God love me.

As long as I keep running about asking: “Do you love me? Do you really love me?” I give all power to the voices of the world and put myself in bondage because the world is filled with “ifs.” The world says: “Yes, I love you if you are good-looking, intelligent, and wealthy. I love you if you have a good education, a good job, and good connections. I love you if you produce much, sell much, and buy much.” There are endless “ifs” hidden in the world’s love. These “ifs” enslave me, since it is impossible to respond adequately to all of them. The world’s love is and always will be conditional. As long as I keep looking for my true self in the world of conditional love, I will remain “hooked” to the world-trying, failing,and trying again. It is a world that fosters addictions because what it offers cannot satisfy the deepest craving of my heart.”

“solitude begins with a time and a place for God, and God alone.  If we really believe not only that God exists but also that God is actively present in our lives– healing, teaching and guiding– we need to set aside a time and space to give God our undivided attention.  (Matt 6:6)”

As I continue with the reamining of the 40 days,  I will do what will create more room for goodness and give room for God to come in.

His Truly,

El