I’ve been silent in this space of late. To be honest, the events of the summer, both in the world and at home have made me want to escape.
Cozy Mysteries are my newest vice.
Not just for the escape, I’ve discovered a couple of authors who take the time to develop their characters and their environment. Authors who know how to write into their stories the beauty that ultimately sustains us when we meet the hard things in life. Like murder. Like a worldwide pandemic and global suffering. Like broken families and the consequences of poor choices.
“Consequences of poor choices” – that’s me trying to be polite.
Let’s just call it what it is: the consequences of sin.
My social media feeds are overwhelmed with people who are crying out, figuratively and literally. Sometimes it’s just all too much. Especially for those of us who tend to be more “sensitive”. (Any other Enneagram 9’s out there?)
In these days of great personal and public tragedy, in a time when the chaos of the world easily seeps into our most sacred places and the earth herself buckles under the strain, my tongue cleaves to the roof of my mouth. My mind is awhirl with images and emotions that won’t submit to elocution.
The Holy Spirit is truly our Helper in these times of despair. Not only does He make intercession for us, ‘with groanings which cannot be uttered’ but He reminds us of the Word, which is our very Bread of Life and Living Water.
It is the Holy Spirit who directs us to Beauty. Not just in the person of Jesus Christ. But in all He has created. (Col 1:15-17) His divine work has the power to reorient our souls to the truth. Perhaps that is why when Jesus speaks to us about worry He points us to the birds of the air and the lilies in the field. (Luke 12:22-31) The beauty of creation directs us back to the heart of the Creator.
Even the beauty we create has in it the power of the divine. Barbara Brown Taylor, in her book, Always a Guest, says, “When we put something beautiful into the world, it is Genesis all over again. We are engaged in divine work.”
Sheila Atchley coined a phrase over a year ago that, along with Micah 6:8, has become the anthem of my whispered life: Beauty Defies Despair
Because while escaping reality may be tempting right now, that is not the life we are called to in Christ Jesus. Rather, we are are called to be Light in the darkness.
The very act of pursuing beauty ignites a spark.
Now, more than ever before in our lifetimes, is the time to fling beauty far and wide. To engage in the divine work! Whatever gifts He has given you, now is the time to use them. Plug your spiritual umbilical cord into the Holy Spirit and get down to business!
“For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.”
We cannot survive these days without His help.