grateful for the non-spectacular and the everyday

– Japanesse Maple

Jesus stopped and called them. “What do you want me to do for you?” he asked. “Lord,” they answered, “we want our sight.” Jesus had compassion on them and touched their eyes. Immediately they received their sight and followed him.

Matthew 20:32-34

Early September is not one of those times our garden offers much in the way of bright color or begs to be photographed. There is always something blooming, yes, but right now it’s just a splash of daisy yellow and crepe myrtle red rather than the spectacular displays we enjoyed from the daffodil, dogwood, azalea, iris, and hydrangea earlier in the year.

– Black-eyed Susans

So yesterday I gave myself an assignment to photograph what we have right now. Why wait to be wowed when there is beauty already here to be uncovered?

Doing this, walking around with my Nikon and my eyes wide open, made me think about so much that we miss when we sit around expecting to have our socks knocked off.

– Dogwood

We can be fooled into demanding airbrushed picture-perfect lives, with everything competing for Top Ten attention, and this can impoverish us. Here are some examples off the top of my head.

  • Constantly replacing a perfectly good anything – car/wardrobe/house/etc. – with something newer and shinier.
  • Thinking every image of ourselves (or our vacation, or our dinner) on social media should be magazine-cover quality, and then photo-shopping to achieve it.
  • Looking for someone more beautiful/glamorous/exciting to love and forgetting the truth that intentionally loving who we are committed to actually makes them more beautiful… and glamorous… and exciting.
  • Watching some televangelist then thinking your spiritual life would be better if you found a church with a celebrity preacher and a better band!
  • Allowing ourselves to be driven by dissatisfaction rather than gratitude, and pursuing what is inauthentic at the expense of what is genuine.

You can add a dozen to this list from your own experience…

So, here are my photos from a run-of-the-mill garden day. May God open your eyes to reveal such genuine beauty in every corner of your life – DEREK

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