Beauty in the Ordinary

A few weeks ago as I was driving home from work,  I caught a glimpse of a breathtaking sunset. Hues of pink, purple, yellow, and orange painted the Blue Ridge Mountains in the distance. I was overcome by awe of God’s artistry. In that moment, I felt the glory and magnificence of God’s presence. Yet, only seconds later, despite the beauty in that moment, I felt the enemy’s lies start creeping into my mind. “Is that all you’ve got God? Just a pretty sunset?” I found myself questioning the presence of God. Sure the sunset was gorgeous, but I needed confirmation. I turned up the radio, silently hoping for one of my favorite worship songs to start playing. That would confirm my doubts, that would complete the moment, right? To my dismay, the song that started playing just sent my hopes crashing down. I arrived home, stepped out of the car, and the moment faded from my mind.

That night as I lay in bed reflecting on the day, I recalled the sunset. I came to the realization that in that moment, I wasn’t satisfied by God’s glory. I had let myself believe satan’s lie that God’s presence wasn’t enough. God tried to reveal himself to me, He tried to get my attention, yet I just wanted more.

My generation has grown up in a consumer-saturated culture filled with dissatisfaction and the constant desire for more. We get a brand new iPhone, and a month later a new and improved model comes out. We always want the newest, shiniest, and best of everything. Just when we think we have achieved the top, something better comes out, and we want it. We’ve grown up in a fast pace, instant gratification, microwave, fast lane world. We want more and we want it right now.

This dissatisfaction can easily seep into our spiritual lives. We think that to experience God we have to attend a large concert, conference, or revival and experience an emotionally intense spiritual feeling to connect with God. While it’s awesome to experience something like that, and those are great things, sometimes I think we lose sight of the beauty in the ordinary.  Our selfish hearts desire more, we aren’t satisfied in the sometimes simple moments of God’s glory. All we have to do is open our eyes to the splendor of God around us. We can’t let ourselves lose the awe in the wonderful power of God’s presence.

As I have tried to be aware of God’s handprints in the ordinary, I have experienced so much joy. I have realized that God is always there. He loves me, and He wants to reveal His beauty to me. All it takes is us recognizing His presence. God doesn’t always speak with a booming shout, but often with a still small voice. Sometimes the most ordinary, simple things in life are the most beautiful. Like the passion in someone’s eyes, or the joy in their laughter. Maybe it’s the sun peeking through the clouds after a storm or the peaceful sound of the rain. Sometimes it’s a quiet moment alone absorbed in God’s word or a song during worship. Perhaps it’s  the roar of the ocean or a sunset over the mountains. Those simple, splendid moments of glory bring joy to my heart.

So, from the moment you open your eyes each morning, open them to God’s presence. Prepare yourself to see God. Expect to see the extraordinary beauty in the ordinary. Seek Him, seek His presence. God is already there, you just have to be aware of His presence and willing to see Him.


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