Enjoying Pretty Things

I like pretty things.  Who doesn’t, right? When we finally got a portion of our kitchen remodel done, I just stood there looking at my open shelving, clapping my hands, and repeating, “Pretty, pretty, pretty.”  (My husband thought me rather strange.)  But our home seems to be in a constant state of remodel (we bought it with that intention), so any semblance of beauty is precious to me.

Is it wrong to enjoy the pretty things around us?  Of course not, but it also depends what we do with that enjoyment.  Do we make it an idol? Are we constantly seeking to fill our lives with pretty things, or do we enjoy the sparks of beauty that pop up around us?  God made the sunset beautiful — we should certainly enjoy it.  But not worship it!  God made the delicate, pretty crocuses to be the first flower that blesses us in the spring, after a few cold, bleak winter months.  We are to enjoy them and be grateful to the Creator for the blessing of them.

The same goes for the everyday around us.  There is so much sadness, sorrow, trouble, disease, and on and on in everyone’s life.  When we can find that speck of beauty in an otherwise dark day or week, month or year, what a blessing.  We can’t help but to enjoy it!  If there is something that I can do for another to facilitate the enjoyment of pretty things, I want to do that.  I have to keep that in check though.  Am I doing it for their applause or to bless them as God has blessed me with the beauty of His grace? One of the posts that was linked up on last week’s grace laced mondays, “Do It Anyway,” made me ponder that a bit more.

Last Monday, I had the pleasure of meeting with a friend who is going through a very difficult time dealing with newly discovered, extensive food allergies.  With this new frontier comes depression, sadness, and despair.  (When taking on such a significant change in one’s food routine, our body literally goes through a period of detox.  It can show us how intertwined the body and mind really are.)  I wanted to bring a little hope to my friend with our discussion of what she can and can’t eat, but also that there can be beauty found even in this foreign, and often dark, land of altered eating.

I made up a little treat that I thought she would enjoy. (I actually goofed on the ingredients and she wasn’t able to have it afterall, but oh well, I think her family enjoyed it 🙁 )  I find it’s the simple and pretty things that can bring us much joy, so I boxed the treat up and decorated it simply.  Just as Christ showers us with his simple Grace in the everyday — in the sunset, in the crocuses, in kitchen shelving, in pretty packages — so can we shower others with pretty things as well.

How do you enjoy beauty around you?  How do you share this beauty with others?  And specifically, how do you find beauty even in the ugliness that inevitably surrounds us all, food allergies or otherwise?

Grace Laced Mondays

Linking up with grace laced mondays again this week.  I encourage you to click on the link and see how others are experiencing grace in the everyday.  Thank you, Ruth!

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12 Responses to Enjoying Pretty Things

  1. Nelle says:

    I don’t think I’ve ever thought of it like that – that thoughtful giving can be a ministry to friends because it turns their thoughts to God, just like my thoughts turn to God when I see something I appreciate. That’s something to dwell on for sure…thanks. xo

    • Cook says:

      Thank you for your kind words! It’s amazing how God can use the little things to minister to each of us (like in the sunset, etc.) and use us in turn to minister to others.

  2. I love your cabinets…they are “pretty, pretty, pretty”! You are a good friend!! Even if she couldn’t eat it, I’ll bet she was thankful that you were there for her trying to help!~

  3. So lovely indeed! God could have created us with no sense of aesthetic or beauty, but he did…and that appreciation for it, and enjoyment of it–is truly GRACE!!

  4. Jenny says:

    Very Pretty!! And I love that we have the ability to bring beauty in other’s lives…living an example of grace. Thanks for posting.

  5. Jennie Rader says:

    Oh I agree! When I take a meal to a family, I try to package it in beautiful ways….cornbread wrapped in parchment, soup in a vintage jar….to me, the gift is much more intentional that way!

  6. Abby says:

    I’m so thankful for God’s gift of beauty, and how He’s given us the ability to enjoy it. There are times (like this morning) where I stand and stare out the window at His glorious creation (we have a nice view of Pikes Peak from our home) and it truly restores my soul.

    Beautiful open shelving, by the way! Love it!

    • Cook says:

      I had the pleasure of visiting Colorado about 6 years ago. What majestic beauty! Although we didn’t go up Pike’s Peak, we drove all around it. We took the back roads (as I remember) from Colorado Springs to where we were staying in Copper Mtn. We were there in June and it was a lot of fun. My Dad, Sister-in-Law, and Brother climbed one of the 14ers. I was able to get out of such hard work with the excuse of a nursing baby 🙂 We’d all love to return there again someday. I grew up in Kentucky, and while we don’t have any mountains as high as the Rocky’s, we have beautiful rolling meadows (and the Appalachians are right around the bend). I always likened the Kentucky countryside to that of France. Beautiful, and yes, true soul restoration. I love when I get to go “home.”

      Thanks for your kind comment, Abby!

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