Leaning into Beauty

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Back in May, when I turned thirty, I decided I wanted my word of the year to be “beauty”. I wanted to intentionally appreciate the beauty of nature, visual art, music, literature, take time to create more art myself, and also have my eyes, ears, mind and heart open to the beauty to be found in unexpected places.

As we launch into 2018, I am renewing my intention to focus on beauty. I’ve picked up some poetry books, I’ve been dabbling in water colour painting, and have been writing down beautiful experiences so that they don’t slip into the haze of my not-so-great memory. It’s been a while since I’ve written a “Beautiful Moments” blog, so I think it’s high time 🙂 Here are a few from this week:

– On Monday I had an exceptionally pleasant conversation with a member of the community who is usually very volatile when he comes into drop-in. We chit chatted for a good 15 minutes without him getting angry, which is record-shattering! (He lost it on me later in the day, but those 15 minutes of happy chatting still happened! Unexpected camaraderie is beautiful.)

– On Tuesday evening the discussion at Bible study was quite powerful, thanks to the decision by a couple of folks to be vulnerable about their struggles. I basically sat back and witnessed these friends come to a deeper understanding of God’s love for them by sharing their unique perspectives and experiences with one another. It was uncomfortable at times, and very worth it. Trusting openness is beautiful.

-After Bible Study a couple of us walked a community member to his WheelTrans bus (an accessible transportation service), while singing “Lean on Me” at the top of our lungs (not my idea! But I went along with it, because… why NOT!) Passersby looked confused and/or amused, and the WheelTrans driver got a kick out of us. Silliness is beautiful.

May you find lots of beauty this year, too.

About joannacatherinemoon

I am the Lead Community Worker at The Dale Ministries in Parkdale, Toronto, ON. The Dale seeks to create safe welcoming spaces in which all people, particularly those on the margins, are encouraged to participate fully, to the best of their abilities and journey together toward a deeper experience of the life God has given us. This blog is meant to help keep my supporters connected with life at The Dale.

2 responses »

  1. Thank you for your post on leaning in to beauty. My prayer this morning driving to work was that I would see God’s beauty and grace and love everywhere. So much beauty in front of me I miss when my mind is preoccupied with things involving me. Thank you for helping me remember to see the beauty in the world and to lean on it, for the courage and strength in me that I am always seeking. Happy winter, stay warm!

  2. I love quotes ” W e can always choose to perceive things differently. We can focus on what’s wrong in our lives – Or we can focus on what’s right” (M. Williamson) Here is one that I love. ” You may shoot me down with your words – You may cut me with your eyes – You may kill me with your hatefulness – But still like air – I WILL RISE”. (Maya Angelo) You handled “that situation” beautifully. Proud to call you friend. Blessings

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