"Never lose an opportunity of seeing anything that is beautiful:
for beauty is God's handwriting- a wayside sacrament.
Welcome it in every fair face, in every fair flower,
and thank God for it as a cup of blessing."
Ralph Waldo Emerson
There is a man who walks every morning in the park where my husband and I walk. He sings beautiful songs- the tune is beautiful, that is. The man is Chinese and he sings in that language. Whenever we pass him he seems prayerful in the way he sings without a thought about the outside world. No self consciousness, no insecurities, simply announcing- to the morning sun and birds and people walking by- that a new day is here, a gift for each of us to behold.
There are so many moments that happen without announcement around us every moment of every day . Subtle, important things, like this day that is unlike any day we have ever seen before, like the passing clouds transforming into animals in their own time- like time to be bored enough to think or reflect without distraction, and demonstrating to our children what that looks like.
Who knows what thoughts and small interactions we are missing out on because we distract ourselves constantly? Who knows what gifts we are forfeiting because we have earbuds in and can't hear the world around us. The momentary, fleeting beauty that will pass without our knowing because we were "liking" an instagram post that is forgotten in 60 seconds.
We cheat ourselves daily out of the richness of being present in life , we use screens to soothe, escape, entertain and feel connection. Trading in the real for a poor pseudo-likeness.
This week, I am challenging myself and you to feel the momentary uncomfortableness of leaving the phone out of reach and noticing the beauty of those things that don't call out for our attention, but are there waiting to be found, nonetheless. A wayside sacrament.
Let me know how it goes and what you discover.