refined under refuge

Longing for Beauty


Longing for Beauty

It is the dark of night and I am fighting.  Clawing, scratching, shoving all in vain. My fists pummel the air but I never make contact because it is too dark for me to see them.  But I can feel them.  All of them.  They have come for me.  They have come to take from me that which I did not  know I even still possessed. There must be a glimmer left somewhere deep within that they want.  I try so hard not to give up but I am so tired.  It has been such a long fight.  I feel the hot, wet tears slide down my cheeks as everything in me wants to surrender. So I do.  It just seems easier this way.  It is easier to have nothing than a little bit of something.  It is easier than having a little hope that keeps me yearning for more.  I want to say they stole her from me but in my heart I know I gave them Beauty.  She leaves such an empty place in my heart that I am sure they can see the gaping wound.  But before she is even out of sight I begin piling brick upon brick to keep away the pain.  I tell myself that she did not belong in my life anyway.  

Do you feel like life has stolen something from you?  Were you thrust, unwillingly, into pain, sickness or despair?  Or perhaps it was abuse, death or depression?  Maybe the first time you got back up.  You bounced back.  You clung to the hope that there was still beauty to be found.  But when the bad just didn’t stop, their relentless pursuit of what you had and what they wanted was just too much.  You got tired.  You finally just let them take her and now you have finally given up hope of ever finding Beauty again.  But every now and then, in that place deep down inside of you, in that place you try so hard to keep shut off from the world, you feel that familiar twinge of longing.  It is still there.  It will always be there no matter how hard you  try to snuff it out.  

Our natural, human defense of numbing our pain can only work for so long before we are confronted once again with desire for Beauty.  It can seep into our lives through the smallest of cracks in our walls, through an unguarded door to the fortress around our hearts.  We were created to long for Beauty and she is always there waiting to be found.  But where is she in the midst of all of the terrible things life has brought forth?  I would be a fool to say that Beauty can be found in the painful experiences we go through in a fallen world. There is no beauty  in the horror of rape or in the savage massacre of innocent people.  There is nothing found within the walls of evil that can even remotely be called beautiful.  But, it is what happens within the heart where we finally find what we have been looking for.  Beauty is found through pain.  Beauty is found out of Pain.  Beauty can be found because of Pain.  For God redeems the broken heart.  And He can so redeem an event or situation that we come away strangely thankful for its occurrence in our lives and the change brought forth in our hearts.  

It makes no sense in and of the world, yet this thread of hope runs through every single event in our lives.  It is the hope of redemption.  We beg God to use the pain and suffering to pull us closer to Him, to make us stronger, better and more full of life.  We hope for purpose.  If just maybe He can use the bad then there can somehow be a reason for our suffering.  This is the secret place where Beauty lives.  She can be found nestled deep down in our hope and in our longing.  She is found in the One who made her.  And no one, no thing, no circumstance can take Beauty from us.  She is ours to keep.  

There is beauty to be found in your life.  Can you see it?  Maybe just a tiny tug of your heart toward God or a glimmer of hope washing so quickly over your body you’re not even sure you really felt it?  I know it feels so scary to even peek above your fortress to look for the more your heart needs to keep beating and hoping.  But somewhere deep inside of that pain, somewhere you may not be able to see right now, is the beauty of God’s redemption.  I pray for Him to reveal Himself to you, that you may begin to find Him right inside of your pain.


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