March 24, 2022

"Beauty is not caused. It is." - Emily Dickinson

Many times we are so caught up in the busyness of life that we don't notice the beauty that surrounds us everyday. We don't take the time to stop to smell the roses or look at the magnificence of the painted skies...especially during the sunset. There's beauty around us everyday but oftentimes we don't pay attention to it because our minds are focused on something else. When I was going through my cancer battle, things seemed bleak at times. However, in this life-or-death ordeal, I knew there was beauty somewhere. I just had to find it. Every day, I was intentional about seeking beauty around me. Finding it gave me peace. It kept me in the present moment and not worrying about the future. It made me happy. It brought me joy. That's what beauty does.

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One day, I was at one of my physician's office and noticed something. The wallpaper I had seen on the walls for over 13 years wasn't wallpaper at all. I had noticed a small mistake (or as I would like to call it, "added character") on the wall. I kept looking for the seams and realized there were none. Mind mind started wandering. "This cannot be a painting. Is this a painting? This can't be. Wait, it is!" Soon, I realized someone had actually painted this mural on the wall. My mind was blown. 🤯

When I shared my new revelation with the doctor, he told me one of his patients painted the mural and he has a different one in each of his examination rooms. I walked around the office to look at them. The murals were absolutely stunning. The detailing was impeccable. I asked the doctor about the inspiration behind the murals and he told me each mural was a real place in Italy. Some of the places have been around for 500 years (during the time of Michelangelo). Wow, wow, wow. As you can probably guess, he loves Italy. Heck, I love Italy after seeing these beautiful murals.

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Imagine how wonderful the patients feel being surrounded by all this beauty while at their doctor's appointment. I'm not sure how I missed this all those years but I'm glad I was finally able to see and appreciate the beauty that was right in front of me. These murals were a reminder that there's beauty everywhere. We just have to take the time to "see" it.

Before I end this post, I want to share 3 easy strategies to help you see the beauty around you everyday:

  1. Talk to a stranger. You never know where that conversation will take you and what you can learn.
  2. Be present. Take time away from technology. Turn off the television and cellphone and spend time with family, friends and yourself. Make deeper, meaningful connections.
  3. Spend time in nature. Pay attention to the wonders of God's creation and see its value.

Beauty is everywhere. It's in people. It's in nature. It's in the world as a whole. It's in opportunities. It's in growth. You just have to pay attention so you can to find it. Sometimes you may be looking for beauty in something ginormous when it can be found in the small things. In his book, The Alchemist, Paulo Coelho says, "The simple things are also the most extraordinary things and only the wise can see them." Be wise...and intentional.

Although I have a few more pictures of the murals in the doctor's office, I will share this last one. I'm still in awe of her talent. She is truly an amazing artist.

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Imagine how different your life would be if you only changed what you choose to see. BE AWARE...of all the beauty around you, all the time, and in each situation.