By Nina Brown, a member of Third Church of Christ Scientist
Almost every morning, I pray with portions of two Bible verses from the KJV Bible – Psalm 90:17 and Psalm 33:11. It goes like this: “Let the beauty of the Lord our God be upon us;” (90:17) and “…the thoughts of his heart to all generations.” (33:11).
When I pray like this, I am reminding myself that all that God makes is good because God is good and all that He provides has the beauty of goodness. I look for that beauty throughout the day, as I am driving to work, and as I interact with my co-workers. I see God’s beauty in kindness, in integrity, in humor. I see it in the trees, the flowers and the rain. I try to remember that no one is excluded from this beauty and that God is with us and sees each of us as an expression of His beauty. This beauty isn’t defined by fashion but by our hearts, and by the way we live and treat others.
I learned this lesson when someone, whose physical appearance had initially been alarming to me, showed me such kindness that his appearance seemed to change before my eyes, and suddenly all I could see was his expression of pure kindness and generosity – true beauty. We were friends after that and shared many happy moments together full of laughter and thoughtful discussions. And once, when I was a child, I had a friend who lied about me and said that I had stolen something when I hadn’t. Her mother asked me to leave and said she would be calling my mom. When I got home my mother was on the phone with her and after she hung up, she explained what had happened and reminded me that God was loving and speaking to each of us and this would resolve the situation.
Shortly after that, the phone rang, and my friend’s mom asked me to come back. I walked the short distance there and was received joyfully. The family, including my friend, explained that jealousy motivated the hiding of a piece of jewelry with the accusation that I had taken it. My friend admitted to this and said God told her it was wrong. We celebrated with forgiveness, hugs, and some Ginger Ale.
I listen to God for guidance throughout the day and, because “the thoughts of His heart are to all generations,” I know that His beautiful thoughts are speaking to everyone, all the time.