Appreciating life's beauty

Americans live by a schedule; ten minutes late for an early morning appointment ruins our whole day.  Our schedules are so hectic until we forget to look for the beautiful things in life.  There’s little or no time for a leisure walk, or to “stop and smell the roses.”  

Beauty doesn’t always cry out for attention; it’s often found in unlikely places.  At other times it’s so obvious we overlook it.  However, those who habitually look for beautiful things, usually find them. 

One day my schedule was full.  I hardly had time for lunch, a quick sandwich, and I rushed out the door to make the next appointment.  But this thought came to mind: “There’s no use being in such a hurry.  Sit down in the lawn chair, take a deep breath, and rest a moment.”  I did.

While relaxing in the chair I observed my surroundings.  It was a dazzling, beautiful summer day.  A soft southerly breeze stroked my face.  A cardinal, perched high in a nearby oak tree, sang a joyful tune.  I absorbed my breathtaking surroundings with amazement.

A butterfly darted in view.  It was an unusual butterfly because it flew much faster than any I had ever noticed.  I had my legs crossed, and suddenly it lit on my shoe, slowly folding and unfolding its wings.  If it could talk it would have said, “I lit so you could get a closer view of something very beautiful.”

For a few moments I was spellbound.  The butterfly’s coloration was medium brown with dark spots on its wings.  I looked on the internet and discovered that it was probably a Bronze Copper.  Nothing sensational, but I had never seen one like it.  That’s the beauty of butterflies: colors and sizes are multitudinous.  I suppose very few people if any, have ever seen all the different kinds of butterflies on earth.  They are a never-ending source of summer beauty.  

Just as suddenly as it appeared it was gone.  Again, I was amazed at the swiftness of flight.  A butterfly is small, fragile, and we think it has very little consequence in the large measure of things in our society.  However, butterflies and other invertebrates collectively provide a wide range of environmental benefits, including pollination and pest control.  

I suppose if they all disappeared and never returned, some harm would come to our environment, and we would lose precious moments of joy. 

As you go about your busy schedule, take time to observe your surroundings, and enjoy the beauty of creation.  A wise man said, “He (God) has made everything beautiful in its time” (Ecclesiastes 3:11 NIV).

The beautiful things in life give us strength for living.

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