It comes from the weaving together of moments: moments of struggles, peace, strength, passion, tears, pain, love, grace, sacrifice, and determination. Beauty is rarely effortless and never without cost, although it can be given and shared freely. We need it. We long for it to surround us and for it to become us.
Beauty is redemption; taking the unlovely and the disregarded and transforming them into something of worth. Smudges of oil transformed and elevated because of intentional redemption and the vision of the artist. Or in the way a baker can combine insignificant ingredients and transform them into a macaroon. Or a sculpture, cracking and shaping stone into a sculpture.
Beauty is a perception: a way of looking at things, people, situations, and life. And often times the most beautiful things in life are the most painful. Gold refined by fire.
Without even really noticing it, beauty saturates our hearts and souls. The more we’re around it, and the more we focus on making it, the more powerful and poignant it becomes. And, to be clear, beauty is so much more then well placed pretty things, lovely colors, and fine composition. It is restoration, pain, strength, order. As we all know, sometimes it hurts to transform and mold things. Sometimes it means that you must disturbing the peace and turning things on their heads. Sometimes you have to allow your hands (or your heart) to get caught up in a mess so that you can create something remarkable.
Why? Why would anyone chose to go through the discomfort and the pain? Why allow the vulnerability and fragility that transformation requires into your life? Because, deep down, we feel the worth of value and worth of things that are truly beautiful. People, projects, goals, dreams seem to be the very messiest, least predicable, most costly things in life. And yet, they are – they can be – the most beautiful. The struggle is nothing compared to the value of the reward.
Beauty tells the story of intention and design, it is created by our hands and by the hands of God.
And we can make it. WE can make our world beautiful.
Em!!! Do you really write this stuff all by yourself??! It is beautiful! You have such a way with words! I love you! Love, mom!
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Wow. This is just what I needed to read today. Man, sometimes life can be really ugly and very hard. Thanks for reminding me that the struggle is beautiful. Time to change my perspective a little.
This is beautiful, Emily. And true.
I love this: “Beauty is rarely effortless and never without cost, although it can be given and shared freely. We need it.”
It’s been hard for me at times to accept that I need beauty in everything. I feel so much healthier and alive when I accept that. But because of my background, it took me a long time to realize and accept what an impact it has on me. It’s not frivolous and it can’t be an afterthought. It’s something that helps me appreciate the truth and complexity of life every single day.
What a beautiful post! I agree that true beauty comes from transformation and pain. One of the most difficult things to learn is to be open to the experience of something difficult and feeling those emotions in their full force in order to come through it and experience the beauty of life. In order to heal, one has to feel…