If I were a more tech-savvy person I would post a few photos to spruce this post up a bit (not to mention fix the background of an earlier blog post, or two). However, until I get more up to date you can close your eyes and imagine with me…well, after reading a bit further that is. Just be sure to reopen them to continue reading.
This past weekend we (wife Melissa and daughters Ellei and Charis) headed to Colorado for a friend’s wedding. It was an enjoyable trip despite my tirechanging practice and lessons learned in parenting (future post). In fact, I am going to post some thoughts and reflections on the trip both here and in subsequent posts.
First, I will address the title of this post, “Beauty Where You Are”. As most reading this will know, I live in Kansas. I have lived here for all but two of my sojourning years on this earth to date. I like it here. I remember when we lived in Illinois (without our daughters, well, Ellei was in the womb for a few months while there) for a two years it was not uncommon for someone to quip one of two responses after learning of the state from which we had moved. One was practically always hilarious to the person asking, and it went something like, “Oh, how is Toto doing?” or something like that. While it did not bother me, on more than one occasion I thought of bursting out in laughter and after gathering myself 30 seconds or so later say something like, “Wow, I have never heard that before…you are so funny!!!” or “He’s dead.”
The other relatively common response went something like, “Oh Kansas, that’s the long state we have to drive through to get to Colorado”. I cannot remember saying the exact words, but I do recall thinking after a remark or two like that, “Why don’t you just move to Kansas and save some drive time?” The implication of course being how the scenery of Illinois is pretty much the same as that of Kansas – i.e., “flat”.
Granted, neither all of Illinois, nor all of Kansas is flat – and yes I do realize there is a state between those two as well. The point is, far too often people fail to see beauty where they are. Far too often people long for something other than what is right before them. Granted, the mountains of Colorado are quite scenic. I think it would be refreshing to see them day in and day out. Yet after a while I imagine even they would run the risk of becoming “old hat” if you will.
Truthfully, there is much great scenery in Kansas. I would suggest getting an “8 Wonders of Kansas Guidebook”. If you do, or you click here, you will see there is more than physical scenery that is a “Wonder” in Kansas (as is the case in any state). This same line of thinking goes for the aspect of beauty where you are. But that is another post.
In the meantime, you must also not forget the beauty of right where you live. I am not saying going to a “scenic” spot on vacation is a waste of time or anything like that. Yet far too often we miss the beauty right in front of our face.
One of my favorite views is from the back cement porch at my parent’s home. I have seen it thousands of times in my life. Granted, I see it far less often now than when I first learned to appreciate it several years ago, but I still take the time to marvel at God’s creation through that view in particular when I am back there. Funny, I imagine it became one of my favorite scenic views after I moved out…or was at least away to college.
Oh the irony of how much beauty is not seen, or at least appreciated, until it is missed. Irony? or Tragedy? Whichever it is, there is a solution to it…