When we speak of beauty often what comes to mind is the physical beauty of a person. But we could also say that a selfless act to help someone or a piece of music was “beautiful”. We see beauty in the innocence of a child, or when someone commits themselves to another in true love. We mean there is something noble, higher, or purer about it that delights the soul.
Experiencing beauty gives us hope in the midst of a troubled world because it tells us that good can still be found. Without beauty our souls shrivel up and struggle to thrive. But an experience of beauty, like love, brings light and vitality to our souls – it’s how our souls breathe.
For this reason, consistently encountering beauty in different ways would be a worthy goal for the year ahead if we desire to live well.
To do this we must slow down. Beauty is found between the lines, in noticing things and taking in what is happening around us. Often we miss beauty in the rush. Helen Keller, the first deaf and blind person to earn a bachelor of arts degree, wrote: The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched - they must be felt with the heart. Beautiful things like love or security (think about what it means to feel safe) are experienced inwardly. Even if you can see an exquisite work of art, or hear a stunning piece of music, the beauty of such things is lost to us until we let them move our heart.
Throughout the Bible people who discovered God spoke of his beauty – to discover him was to discover love, what is noble and pure and good, in a way that brought hope and delighted the soul. Finding him would be a worthy goal for the year ahead if we desire to live well in our troubled world.