Friday, December 30, 2011

finding the beauty

After the last post, maybe it's time for something beautiful.  
I have taken so many pictures in the past few months.  
There is beauty in the late fall and early winter.  
But they haven't really fit nicely into a blog post.
(They don't really have much to do with this one, either, but I thought I'd share...)

The other day there was a beautiful sunset.  
One of my kids noticed it out the front window, and we ran outside with our cameras. 

I went hiking in the woods yesterday.  
True, it was with 8 other people.  
 But there is just something about walking in the woods.  
Something about it that makes it kind of a solitary thing even with other people.  
Maybe it is because you often walk single file? 

This water is an ugly, muddy brown.  
But when you look at it again - look deeper - it offers a vivid reflection of the surroundings.  
Often more intense than the original. 
It is like that with God, with others?  
What are we missing by just seeing the ugly, muddy, brown water?

Today is the Feast of the Holy Family.  
Convenient to have that after Christmas, isn't it?  
Probably wasn't exactly what the church was thinking when they placed it there on the calendar, though.  Mine has been an unholy mess lately.  

All these extra children....  I ran my dishwasher twice yesterday.  
The supper conversation, after I heated up a spiral sliced ham, went like this: 
"I don't like ham."  " you like peanut butter and jelly." 
"Yes."  "Great - one slice or two?"  
...... A little while later......
"Are there peanuts in the peanut butter?"  "Well, as a matter of fact, yes."  
"I don't like peanuts in my peanut butter."  
[Insert sigh here.] 
"Do you like toast?"  

But all around us there is beauty.  
This picture was of a few weeks ago.  The leaves were turning.  
Only God could create such a pattern - even with turning leaves.  

The homily this morning was one I needed to hear.  
Would love to hear again.
Families are the basic building block of our society.  
And if they mirror our society, 
then there is no wonder that there is greed, jealousy, hurt, anger in our families.  
But the change has to start in our families - in the domestic church.  

Prayer.  Forgiveness.  Love.
Our greatest joys...and also our greatest hurts
are probably found in the context of family life.

I've got quite my own situation.  
One that I'm pretty sure I can't sort out by myself, 
and even more unlikely - fix by myself.

Which is why we have God.
A God of miracles.
A God of the impossible.

(side note....^ that bird is really kind of ugly when it is flying...)

There was a wonderful bit from JP2 today at Mass about the role of the family.  
I will share it if I can find it.  

And there were the familiar verses from Colossians about 
compassion, gentleness, humility, gentleness, patience.

Noticeably absent from the list are
impatience, complaining, anger, self-righteousness.  

I could probably go on.  
Though I'm not really sure how much sense I've made thus far.

It's hard to think.  
But, I think I'm out of pictures for now.
And there is a birthday party happening later today at my house,
and much cleaning to be done before that happens.  

Prayers for Holy Families.


  1. Adore the late winter photos. So much beauty, even in the dying to the old. We were driving the other day and the bare gray trees were silhouetted against the white and gray winter sky. Gorgeous.

  2. Beautiful pictures, indeed! Hikes are a great way to rejuvenate!

  3. Nice photos! Happy Feast of the Holy Family!