Thursday, July 4, 2013

Five Minute Friday: Beautiful

Lisa-Jo BakerFive Minute Fridays are the beautiful, unscripted moments that happen between Thursday night at the FMFParty on Twitter and for days and days after as post after post of inspiration and encouragement gets linked up at Lisa Jo Baker’s site here. Writers and joy abound and it’s a great place to be.

This Week: Beautiful

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The older I get, the more I understand what Elisabeth K├╝bler-Ross meant when she said this:

The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity, and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern. Beautiful people do not just happen.

Maybe you don’t get to understand it until later – until you’ve been through some of that suffering and loss yourself – but when it dawns on you, it opens up a whole new world.

The first time I remember this sinking in was at a Christmas bazaar hosted at a local high school. It attracted a huge artsy crowd from far and wide and was a prime spot for people watching (and getting some great deals). I remember one woman who stood out for me – not for any one specific reason, like striking eyes, or hair, or anything else, but the complete way she was put together really caught my eye. She wasn’t wearing the typical holiday cheer in red or green – just a simple cream-colored fisherman’s sweater over jeans and brown boots with her silvery hair back in a clip – and she just looked elegant. I watched her move from booth to booth, her face lighting up with real pleasure at the artists’ offerings; talking with some of them; at other booths, simply letting her hands run over the different creations. She wasn’t young, but she had such character and grace about her, I remember her to this day.

She was a total stranger and I could see this in her. I think of others – friends who are closer to me – who I know much more intimately. Inevitably, the ones I think of the most when the word beautiful comes to mind, are the ones whose road has not been easy; whose burdens have not been light. In my circles, I think this comes from having One to lean on in the hard times, as well as the good, our God whose strength sustains and enlivens us. When His life touches your life; when His character becomes what you seek; when it’s His strength that you’re leaning on, it’s not hard to be beautiful. It shines from the inside out.

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36 comments :

  1. Mm. Wow. Now THAT was beautiful. What a terrific reminder and a wonderful perspective. I'm going to save that quote. We are as diamonds in the rough; the more we are chiseled, the more the beauty will shine through. As a struggler, thank you for being an encouragement that these rough times can shape me into the woman I long to be. Stopping by from Lisa Jo's blog. =)

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    1. Thank you for stopping by Stephanie. We're all strugglers, aren't we? Moving through the days by grace alone. But through it all, like you said, the chiseling allows His beauty to shine through.

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  2. Isn't that the truth? When others see Him in you, how can you be anything but beautiful?

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    1. Amen to that Kelly. My prayer is that I can set all things aside and let that - Him - be what is seen in me.

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  3. This is beautiful, you are beautiful. You have the heart, the eye, the voice of an artist.

    In a way I am sure I have seen that woman too. She stands out because of her grace - you want to know her and you want to know what she knows.

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    1. What a treat to spend part of this Thursday/Friday cycle with you! In person and online. I'll take a deep breath and just say thank you - you know I need grace, even for that! Praying that He will continue to reveal the path for both of us!

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  4. Rebekah - such a sweet post! So true so true so true. I need to remember that my beauty comes from within, the kindness I've learned, the love he pushes me to extend to others... beautiful post. Happy Friday to you!!!

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    1. It does, and we can see it shinning through. Praying for you today, friend! May His grace and peace surround you in the most tangible way!

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  5. As I read this, I thought of one of my best friends. Mama of six whose husband decided a year and a half ago that he was done. She could have fallen apart...instead, she found her strength in Him, and she shines every day. She's one of the most beautiful people I know, inside and out. Thank you for this...love your take on the prompt this week! Blessings! :)

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    1. Yes Mel, she is exactly the kind of person I'm thinking of. I'm just in awe of these amazing, beautiful people who embrace His strength and carry on.

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  6. Hi Rebekah! I know what you mean, sometimes a person just 'pops' out at you for no specific reason. But their bearing just speaks volumes. (I bet you are like that.)

    I think because it comes from the inside out, its harder for anyone to see themselves as beautiful. We need to tell each other!

    Happy Friday!
    Ceil

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    1. You are just too kind Ceil. Thank you for joining up again - I look forward to seeing your smiling face here! I hope this spoke to you, because you're right - we do need to tell each other! All the time!

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    1. And you too Denise. Have a blessed weekend.

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  8. You painted such a wonderful (beautiful!) picture with your words. I can just see this lady and the quiet beauty radiating from her. Internal beauty has so much power, though some fail to recognize this. Thank you for sharing!

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    1. Isn't it amazing how once we start to look past the "supposed to be" just how much we can see? I'm grateful for that lesson learned as I get a little older.

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  9. "Beautiful people don't just happen." And for so long, I thought that was the case. But God, He makes all things beautiful. He can take the most bruised and broken people and shape them into beautiful, living works of art for His glory! Have a blessed week.

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    1. I don't remember where the story of the cracked pots began, but that's it exactly! It's when we're bruised and broken that His light can shine out all the more, and then, that we become His beautiful creatures!

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  10. And He is made perfect in our weakness. When we are weak, leaning on Him, perhaps we don't feel beautiful. I know I don't. Perhaps it is the one time when we truly are beautiful because he then is radiating his glory through us.
    Thank you for your insights and the moment of reflection and devotion to His beauty.

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    1. Oh yes Kati - without His strength in my weakness, I would be lost. I'm so grateful for that. Thank you for stopping by!

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  11. "the ones whose road has not been easy; whose burdens have not been light" These are the ones I think of when I think of who I know that is beautiful. I do think we have to be older to 'get it'. I pray for my daughter to understand that fact quickly.

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    1. Oh for our daughters to learn this lesson quicker than the ones that the world will teach them. We tell ours that she's an SSB girl: Strong, Smart, and Beautiful - and try to emphasize just where that beauty comes from - from her heavenly Father!

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  12. stopping by from FMF - "Beautiful people just don't happen!" What a great post! Thanks for sharing!

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    1. Thank you for stopping by - have a blessed weekend.

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    2. Thanks for stopping by - I'm blessed to have you here.

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  13. It's those people that intrigue you to know that there must be something different about them --It's Jesus -- the beauty of Him in them that draw us.

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    1. He shines through - and it's beautiful. Amen to that. Thanks for stopping by!

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    2. Yes it is - thank you Jennifer!

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  14. Just beautiful! Thank you for sharing these five minutes with us - I have been blessed.

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    1. It blesses me to hear that. Thanks for sharing this with me.

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  15. I think what so often takes my breath away when I see beauty in others is how you can see Grace has had it's way in them! What is more beautiful than that? Loved this post my friend! Sorry I missed you at the #fmfparty last night... family time called!

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    1. And where would we be without grace? From Him, from friends - it's a fresh breath. Missed you last night too, but family calls first. I know! Loved your post this week. Thanks for sharing mine with me.

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  16. So much truth here. I hope I'm on my way to becoming one of these beautiful works of art myself, capable of seeing the beauty in others as well.

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    1. The more you let Him in, the more you'll see this. I'm so glad you stopped by.

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  17. Yes friend... the cry of my heart - that others would see the beauty of Him in me... Thank you for this reminder.

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    1. Thank you for this - just getting caught up in time for next week. I hear and echo the cry of your heart.

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Thank you for the kindess of your comment. I pray your patience with the word verification. I've had such troubles with spammers lately. Thank you for grace. I look forward to reading all the comments and responding. I appreciate you!