Surprised by Beauty

by E.West
While strolling along Stanley Park seawall 3rd beach, I stopped to look at shells. I thought they looked rather dull. They were brown and white with crustaceans on them. I wasn’t too impressed until I opened the shells. Inside there was a lovely mother of pearl mixed with a beautiful purple hue. I started to open several shells just to see the hidden loveliness. What a contrast from the outside. The shells, I wouldn’t think of saving turned out to be quite attractive.
Women who have outer beauty complain that they are not taken seriously for their intellects. In the story Twelve Years a Slave, a slave, had received many lashes on the orders of the master’s wife. He had been attracted to her beauty and demanded sex on a regular basis. She eventually died from her misery, unable to eat and sleep. Her understanding of eternity gave her the rest she so longed for.
The Bible refers to beauty when God says man looks at the outside, but God looks at the ! heart. 1 Samuel 16:7  How does beauty emanate from the heart? We have all met people who exude love and kindness. They are warm individuals who are wonderful to work with; happy,
positive, energetic, and have a smile that lights up a room.
Where does that inner beauty come from? The Bible speaks about the fruit of the Spirit. Jesus said that he would send the comforter, the Holy Spirit.
The infilling of the Holy Spirit will give inner peace, love, joy, patience, kindness, 1Peter 3:3,4  Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, instead it should be that of the inner self the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight. Now, before we get all in a tizzy about “what, no bling?” It’s all about attitude, humility, and whether we dress to impress or look our best. What is the use of flaunting our wealth in gold, diamonds and pearls. Just wear them and remember that love, a kindly smile, a word in season, a good listening ear is more pleasing to God and more helpful to others. Who wants to age? Not I, but if it’s the quiet spirit that is unfading, then it’s better than concentrating on the potions to lessen the crows feet and laugh lines.

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