Sunday, March 04, 2012

Sunday Afternoon Tea

I originally wrote this post two years ago while pondering the subject of Beauty.  I thought I'd share it again today.  All pictures, of course, were taken during that past winter.

Re-reading Hidden Art recently has me contemplating the importance of beauty in our lives and the reason we have within us an overwhelming desire to be surrounded by that which is lovely.

As Edith says in her book... many times and in various ways... Christians more than anyone should live a life that reflects beauty and creativity as we are made in the Image of a creative God.

Never perfect, of course, as only God is perfect.  Every attempt we make to bring beauty and creativity into our life will result in imperfection.

However, in this fallen world we find ourselves living... accepting the imperfections in people, places, and things is better than never trying at all.

It has been such a good weekend to be pondering a creative God... and us in His image.  I woke again Saturday morning to a thick layer of sparkle on the forest after another night of Hoar frost.  Soon I was throwing my flannel housecoat on and locating my boots at the bottom of the closet to stand on the front porch and snap away... the zoom lens allowing some great pictures without stepping into deeper snow.

Light flurries were falling, which I found later is actually called diamond dust in a Hoar frost... as they are not actual flurries.  Diamond dust... now that is a lovely gift from the Creator on St. Valentine's Day weekend.  Especially when one did not have to drive on icy roads last night. :)

It has always been easy for me to see the beauty in God for He has poured out such loveliness to us in this world.  I mean, really, He didn't have to create that which makes chocolate or fine cheese or chewy loaves of french bread.  It is He who created the world which makes possible my morning coffee and afternoon tea.

He brings to us that which is seasonal... strawberries and rhubarb in spring, melon and tomatoes in summer, pumpkin and apples in autumn, and peppermint everything at Christmas... well, perhaps not everything... but enough.

How much we reflect the creativity of our Maker when we spend an afternoon in the kitchen baking a pie, roasting beef with mushrooms, mashing potatoes, steaming green beans, and putting on the pot of coffee when the snow is falling outside... or... creating tiny cucumber sandwiches, miniature lemon scones, and pouring pink lemonade in pretty teacups for a summer tea.

I fondly remember the picnics with my kids when we... at the last minute quite often... would assemble cheese and fruit and stop by the grocery for good bread on the way to the park.  Nothing which required any special creativity, other than the purchase of a vintage picnic basket at a garage sale during the summer, with such a picnic in mind.

It is God who placed us in a world of beauty which can leave us breathless... whether falling diamond dust on a Midwestern forest, the alps of Edith's home as she wrote, the amazing colors of a New England autumn, the calm waves of Lake Michigan in summer, the paprika coloring of the earth where my New Mexican friend lives... all the colors of the rainbow to make up the earth and sky and water which surrounds us.

Hubby surprised me yesterday with yellow roses for Valentine's Day. Part of me wanted to tell him he should not have spent the money but the wisdom that comes with a long marriage caused me to bite my tongue and say thank you.  
I carried yellow roses on our wedding day.  While I do love red roses and pink roses and lavender roses... my preference is always for yellow roses.  Looking at yellow roses makes me happy.

So, the next time I'm displaying pretty china, polishing the silver, dusting beautiful (inherited) antiques, admiring the large paws and pretty nose of a kitty, picking the freshest of green beans and tomatoes from the garden, listening to the music of birds or Bach, searching for treasure at the thrift store, walking beside the duck pond at the park, or feeling refreshment and strength as I read the Palms of King David...  I will ponder the One who loves us enough to have placed us in such beauty.

And it isn't Heaven, yet... can you imagine?

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