It’s been over a year since I’ve been in the Swiss Alps, the first place I ever cried for beauty’s sake. Looking upon mountains, being above clouds; that was beauty I’d never experienced first hand before. The only way I knew how to react was to cry. I cried because I was surrounded by so much beauty made by the hand of God and I cried because I know that God made me, too. The only thing I could think about was how He made these mountains that soared above the clouds and touched the sky, and yet He calls me beloved. After being in the Alps, it was hard to return to Corpus and be fully appreciative of what’s here. Yesterday, I thought about how I really want to go back to the Alps so I can experience those feelings again. Then I remembered that even though Corpus Christi is no Swiss Alps, I can still seek beauty. The view might be different, but that doesn’t have to mean it’s less than.
I’ve found myself at the beach a lot this semester. The waves are really calming and I love to walk by the water and let the waves wash over my feet. Whenever I’m on the beach, these lyrics never fail to come to mind:
Your love so deep,
Is washing over me.
Your face is all I seek.
You are my everything.
You are my one desire.
Lord, hear my only cry
To know You all my life.
-sinking deep, Hillsong United
I honestly used to never go to the beach and I had no idea that something so breathtakingly beautiful was a 15 minute drive away. Now, I’m at the beach once every few weeks and I remind myself every time that I stick my feet in the water that Gods’s love for me is bigger than the ocean I’m standing in. I dwell on those song lyrics and think about His Love washing over me and His Grace and Mercy making me clean again.
I also encourage you to find beauty in yourself. If my first semester of college has taught me anything so far, it’s that it is perfectly okay to go a few days without makeup and be completely, unabashedly real. Literally no one cares and your friends still love you the same and it’s great.
In this picture, my skin is far from perfect, my smile is lopsided, and one my eyes is more squinty than the other. But this is me, this is how I smile, and this is real; so, I love this picture. It’s an honorable pursuit to find beauty in your imperfections and be kind to yourself.
In this first semester of college, this has been really placed on my heart. Beauty can be found anywhere. You might have to look a bit harder and maybe even squint your eyes a bit, but you’ll find it. Take heart, take a walk, and go find something beautiful that reminds you how God has put you wherever you are for a reason and there’s infinity joy to be found in Him. Find beauty in your surroundings and in yourself.