I've finished Steve DeWitt's book Eyes Wide Open: Enjoying God in Everything. It was spot on and a good compliment to Ann Voskamp's One Thousand Gifts, a book I endeavored to summarize but couldn't because I kept underlining and highlighting every single page.
And then I read a children's book to the boys the other night- a paraphrase of Psalm 19 (I'm Listening, God by Elspeth Campell Murphy) and it put it this way:
"I tried to count the stars, but I lost track. 'Listen, listen,' the sky seemed to say. 'Somebody wonderful made me!' 'I'm listening,' I answered- and then I laughed, because I was listening with my eyes."
It reminded me of Ann Voskamp's Word-lens:
"The only way to see God manifested in the world around is with the eyes of Jesus within. God within is the One seeing God without. God is both the object of my seeing and the subject who does the act of all real seeing, the Word lens the inner eye wears. To sit in the theater of God and see His glory crack the dark, to open the eyes of my heart to see the fountain of His grace- thousands of gifts- I have to split heart open to more and more of Jesus. Who can split open eyelids but Jesus? He tears the veil to the Holy of Holies, gives me the only seeing I have. I have been lost and now I am found and I sing it softly, before the flying of the flocks south: 'Be thou my vision, O Lord of my heart...'"
And Steve DeWitt's gift and map analogy:
"Beauty is both a gift and a map. It is a gift to be enjoyed and a map to be followed back to the source of the beauty with praise and thanksgiving."
So today I saw these zinnas again- beauty blooming forth defying all odds in a pinch between concrete and wood- and I listen with my eyes and with my heart and wonder leads me to worship and I am undone at our beautiful God, the source of all beauty and the only beauty that endures and gives and saves even though I am so small and He is so big- even so.
Wonder to worship- it's a calling for us to rise to in our everyday-ness.
For He is beautiful. Here's to listening with our eyes.
"One thing I ask from the Lord,
this only do I seek:
that I may dwell in the house of the Lord
all the days of my life,
to gaze on the beauty of the Lord and to seek him in his temple." Psalm 27:4