Look to Praise

“I think it pisses God off if you walk by the color purple in a field somewhere and don’t notice it. People think pleasing God is all God cares about. But any fool living in the world can see it always trying to please us back.”
– Alice Walker, The Color Purple

I love this quote. I don’t necessarily agree whole-heartedly with it, but I love it. I don’t think it pisses God off when we fail to notice the beauty he offers up to us every single moment of our lives. Instead, I think it brings Him sadness. The type of sadness a child feels when presenting a freshly colored masterpiece to a sibling who tosses it aside without even looking at it; or the type of sadness a wife feels when she appears before her husband for a night out on the town and he doesn’t notice all she has done to make herself beautiful for him. Too often we hurt each other by ignoring the simple gestures of love offered up each day. Too often we bring sadness to God’s heart as we walk by the Love in a magnolia tree without even whispering “thank You.”

As I set out for a late-morning walk yesterday, this idea suddenly became very important. While I normally do take notice of flowers and critters on my walks, I found myself intentionally looking for colors, birdies, inspiration. As I wandered about, I could feel my eyes dancing – there was so much to see, so much to soak in:

  • Yellows, pinks, purples, reds, greens, blues, and whites so bright and vibrant! The flowers, the trees, the bushes and grass; the path of blackness next to rocks and pebbles of gray and brown and dull white; puddles of rainwater that looked like mirrors; a tree stump that someone had carved into a cross.
  • The birds, all of them. Robins, mourning doves, blackbirds, hawks, a goldfinch, a cardinal, and tiny little brown birds for whom I have no name.
  • Flags waving in the breeze, decorations on homes, luscious landscapes, and a church steeple looking up into the heavens.
  • Bunnies, squirrels, chipmunks, doggies in yards and cars, and kitties in windows.
  • A sky filled so full of white, puffy clouds that I wished for a moment for the power to jump up into it.

Yesterday, as I strolled along, my heart was filled with praise and gratitude. How magnificent it all looked and how blessed my spirit felt! For, I could see it – all of it. My eyes not only embraced the Love of the magnolia tree, but they formed puddles of joy and admiration for the watering of my soul.

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