A Quiet Game called “Photographic Memory”:
Everyone looks at the same photograph for 30 seconds.
Remove the photo and write down as much as you can remember about it.
The person with the longest list of items that are really in the photo wins!
As we look at God’s world, can we see, really see, what He created? Or do we look past the beauty, the technicolor, the detail, the variants, the love, the indwelling, the calm, the preciousness in a child’s face, the innocence, the majesty… look past to see the mean, nasty, ugly, vicious, ridicule, gossip, anger, strife? Oh, how I wish the world were without these things. I want to be able to see only God’s beauty. But this world is filled with such hatred and animosity and sin that it truly is hard to see past and even find the lovely some days, some moments. But we are God’s children and He has created the beauty for us. Adam was placed in the Garden of Eden and given the privilege to name the animals. Adam saw all that God created. God called it all good and very good.
Then God said, “Behold, I have given you every plant yielding seed that is on the surface of all the earth, and every tree which has fruit yielding seed; it shall be food for you; and to every beast of the earth and to every bird of the sky and to every thing that moves on the earth which has life, I have given every green plant for food”; and it was so. God saw all that He had made, and behold, it was very good. And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day. Genesis 1:29-31
Let us take moments of each day and look beyond the worldliness of the moment and see His world through His eyes using our eyes. It is beautiful and there is so much that is lovely. Ann Voskamp, author of “One Thousand Gifts”, invites us to look for those things for which we are grateful…not just a birthday present or a bouquet of flowers, but the love of a mother, the wind in our hair, the bright pink of a rose. “I want to see beauty. In the ugly, in the sink, in the suffering, in the daily, in all the days before I die, the moments before I sleep.” — Ann Voskamp from “One Thousand Gifts: A Dare to Live Fully Right Where You Are”. I, too, want to see the beauty. Can I see it in the vile, in the wicked, in the mean, or in the angry? Yes, I know they are all around me, but I choose to see God’s best before I see the world’s worst. Oh, yes. I do mean this.
I am swept into tears as I type these words for the world is so deep in these terrible things and I just can hardly stand it. I want love and peace and calm to surround me and everyone else. I am a big wuss and cannot help that. I trust and cannot help that. I love and cannot help that. I feel empathy and sympathy. I want to capture the innocence of my childhood and live amidst it for always. I am just too…no, not too, but I am me, just me, and I am who God created. I want to be me and see the world as God created it, not as man has made it to be. This is my Father’s lovely world and I want to see it as He made it through my eyes, even through my tears. I wish it to be that way for all, but that may not be so in this day and age. Yet, I can still pray for it to be so.
So, as those who have been chosen of God, holy and beloved, put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience; bearing with one another, and forgiving each other, whoever has a complaint against anyone; just as the Lord forgave you, so also should you. Beyond all these things put on love, which is the perfect bond of unity. Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body; and be thankful. Colossians 3:12-15
Father, this is Your world as You made it. The vileness and hatred that dwells here is not You, but You know it is here. Father, if it cannot go away, disappear, then I ask You to hold my heart that it could stand to live in this world, but in Your arms. May I see the lovely that is Yours, the angelic that is in that little one’s face, the glory in those flowers, the ruby on the hummingbird’s throat, the black and orange and blue in the butterfly’s wings, the delight in my husband’s heart towards me, the kindness I feel from people who cared for my Mama for five years, the gentleness of the breeze when it blows in from the north. I want to know You, Abba Father, in Your world of beauty. Amen.