Proverbs 31:30 – Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting. (NIV)
Today, I got an e-mail with beautiful pictures of ice sculptures. Earlier, I had one of sand sculptures, equally beautiful. Neither type is long-lasting and many people would wonder why one would spend time making such fleeting things.
I could think of many reasons. They bring pleasure to the beholders and recognition to the creators, and they often have a therapeutic effect on both the artist and those appreciating the sculptures.
When we make a meal, which requires a lot of effort and which is eaten in a few minutes, or when we do endless loads of laundry, which are back in the hamper in a day, we feel like we've wasted our abilities. Yet these efforts, sometimes beautiful, are remembered by the recipients of our time and attention.
One of the most beautiful of pictures for me is the design that frost leaves on a single glass pane. We seldom see such designs now, with our central heat and double glazed windows. God is an artist beyond measure. He wants us to see beauty, but not depend on it.
The Bible tells us what true beauty is: "How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of those who bring good news, who proclaim peace, who bring good tidings, who proclaim salvation, who say to Zion, 'Your God reigns!'" (Isaiah 52:7 NIV)
There was a little verse in my autograph book that said, "Only one life; 'twill soon be past. Only what's done for Christ will last."
Prayer: Lord, we do thank You for the beauty around us, and for those who are able to bestow their talents on us. Give us an appreciation of these things, but help us to be aware of the time we spend making lasting beauty for Your kingdom by being a shining light. In Jesus' name, we ask. Amen.