I’ve mentioned before that I learn quite a bit from my kids. R teaches me about loving the homeless and N teaches me that laughter is important in every facet of life. Recently, though, R makes me think more about loving what is beautiful.
Let’s be frank: what is beautiful to the under-five crowd may not tickle my own sensibilities, but she makes me stop and consider what I do and don’t value. I’ve always erred on the side of frugal; my childhood checkbook ledger was filled with “Deposit”, “Deposit”, “Deposit” entries in my scrawling handwriting. (My one deviation was for “Dog Fancy” magazine. Why, oh why?) My point is that while I wouldn’t have equated cheap and good, I certainly
paused walked away from anything that caused me to spend “unnecessarily”. Sadly, I sometimes think that also meant that money controlled me and that the life of generosity to which I feel called got sacrificed on the altar of thrift. Art? Flowers? Some made it into my home, but not much. Sacrificial giving? Hmmm….
But not R; she loves “pretty” things. We chatted in the car today and she declared that we should plant LOTS of flowers to make our yard beautiful. She picks through my jewelry and asks me to wear the “beautiful” pieces. Her longing is not for functional rain boots, but pretty ones, and so she will have them. I’m not saying we need to kowtow to the idea that if it isn’t pretty it isn’t worth having (my very plain, cheap toothbrush will do just fine, thanks), nor that her metric for obtaining more pretty things is the goal (save me from a house full of dress-up clothes!), but that I think she has a point: if you need something (and the definition of need is a different post), why not make it something that makes you smile? Something that reflects creativity, that reflects beauty? Because ultimately, it’s beauty that reflects the One who created it all.
Next time you go to the farmer’s market, I’ll be the one beaming with a bouquet of flowers in hand.