“A lake is a landscape’s most beautiful and expressive feature. It is Earth’s eye; looking into which the beholder measures the depth of his own nature.”
― Henry David Thoreau, Walden
We have all been awe-struck when we come across an incredible image of this magnificent world we live in. For decades, photographers, seasoned professionals and amateurs alike, have attempted to capture the spectacular wonders of nature – trying to communicate, express, and interpret what they see as they click away.
In my limited capacity as a novice photographer, I try to capture what I see when I am surrounded by the beauty of nature. But even more so, I realize it’s not really what I see but what I experience.
The heavens are telling the glory of God; and the firmament proclaims his handiwork. Day to day pours forth speech, and night to night declares knowledge. There is no speech, nor are there words; their voice is not heard; yet their voice goes out through all the earth, and their words to the end of the world. In the heavens he has set a tent for the sun, which comes out like a bridegroom from his wedding canopy, and like a strong man runs its course with joy. Its rising is from the end of the heavens, and its circuit to the end of them; and nothing is hid from its heat.
This is what I experience in nature – the Glory of God – His beauty found in the most majestic mountain, the powerful ocean, a calm and smooth lake, and the most intricate flower. To me nature reflects the beauty of God. And that beauty is so sublime, so enthralling that it speaks to something deep within us, it speaks to our very souls.
Lately, I have been thinking about how I, a creation of God, reflect His beauty.
How can I reflect God’s beauty? A warm smile in a tense work place. A kind gesture in the grocery store. A patient answer to an elderly person. A listening ear to a friend in need. A reassuring hug to a frightened or sad child. A supportive hand on my husband’s shoulder. A warm and delicious home-cooked meal made for my family.
Recently, a friend of mine recounted a story that a parish priest told to him a few years back.
A young woman showed up at the door of the rectory asking to be baptized. The priest invited her in and proceeded to ask her why. She answered, “Josephine B.” Josephine was my friend’s mother, a woman who quietly but devotedly loved her husband and family, and served the church that she loved. She reflected the beauty of God in her quiet but powerful way. Without any fanfare, she touched this young woman’s life.
The beauty of God is really a reflection of God’s limitless, merciful, kind, and compassionate love. A love that He is always communicating to us through the beauty of His world. I want to also be a reflection of His beauty. I want to be a reflection of His love.
This is a response to the Weekly Photo Challenge: Reflections.