Do I look beautiful?

 
Last Wednesday was a busy day.  I had errands to run and too much on my list for the day.  Do you ever do that?  Write so many things on your list for one day that only a super-hero could accomplish them all? . . . I’m no super-hero.

Anyway, in the midst of our errands, I noticed a park with access to the lakefront.  It isn’t an area I usually drive in, so everything was pretty new to me. But the park was calling my name, beckoning me for a few minutes of fun.  A new adventure.  A few precious moments with my children and a break from the tasks at hand.

It was the perfect impromptu stop for a busy day.  There was a grassy area overlooking the lake filled with park benches and swings and then a tiny path down a (steep) hill leading to the lakefront.  And yes, since the cause underfoot was adventure, we took the tiny path down the steep hill.

It was a small section of beach filled with rocks and the kids had a blast throwing them in the water.  I sat for awhile on the big cement blocks, taking in the picturesque view and enjoying the serenity that comes with waves crashing and seagulls chirping.

Peace.

I picked up some of the stones.  I love smooth stones.  I love holding them and rubbing my fingers across them.  Thinking of where they have been, the process they have gone through to become smooth.  Roughness worn away by years of water and waves.

 
Our Christian walk is like that.  We experience trials and hard circumstances that toss us around like waves.  But God uses those things to refine and transform us.  He works away our roughness and draws us closer to Him, all the while working to an end-result like the smoothness of a rock.

I gazed across the beach.

I noticed how beautiful the wet rocks looked.  They were vibrant and shiny, revealing their true colors.  Being soaked by the water each time the wave approached made them beautiful.  The rocks that were beyond the waves looked gray and dull.  

And that was when I wondered,

Do we look more beautiful when we are in the midst of trials and difficult circumstances?  

Is that when we shine the most?

How often we want to run from the trial or difficulty of something we’re facing.  But we will find freedom in embracing those circumstances with purpose, knowing the God is at work within us.  He will use the challenge at hand to weather our rough spots and make us smooth.  


Yes, we are shiny in His hand.  We are beautiful in His grasp.  

 

“In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials.  These have come so that your faith – of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by the fire – may be proved genuine and may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed.”  1 Peter 1:6-7

 

“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have 
been called according to His purpose.”  Romans 8:28