Monday, May 15, 2006

beautiful mustard

With my new camera in hand, suddenly everything is a potential photographic subject!

Like this bouquet of four-petalled flowers which at first I thought was phlox. But it couldn’t be because phlox has five petals. On studying my field guide, I figure it’s probably a member of the mustard family - perhaps Dame’s Rocket?

But who would have thought mustard could be so pretty - with its petals that look like a pinwheel its ever-so-faint streaks of pink and that telltale family likeness, a mustard seedpod which, even at this early stage, is peeking through the flower’s center.

Seeing these closeups of flowers reminds me of relating to people. Just like it’s easy to ignore a stand of common mustard in my rush through the day, and miss its singular beauty, I easily miss the beauty of the people around me – never noticing the sparkle in that person’s eye, another’s unique way of talking, still another’s droll wisdom or contagious laughter.

I think of Jesus who noticed a man with a misshapen hand (Luke 6:6), invited a despised tax collector to be part of His in-crowd (Matthew 9:9), saw Kingdom potential in rough, common fishermen (Luke 5:1-11) and was moved to tears at the weariness and lostness of a whole crowd of individuals (Matthew 9:36). If God knows the number of our hairs, He surely sees and values the unique beauty of each one of us.

I want to be more like that. I want to take the time to focus on, see and appreciate the beauty of the supposedly unexceptional individuals that walk through my life – like these macro flower shots help me to see the beauty in, of all things, mustard flowers!

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