So, I arrived at the chapel Monday morning, and this is the view that greeted me:
I was quite surprised, actually, to see this tree in full bloom–even though I walked past it on the way into church on Sunday morning. I guess that I was preoccupied at the time (not practicing mindfulness, I suppose), because it wasn’t until Monday that I noticed these beautiful blossoms! Life is like that sometimes. We walk past the beauty of God’s creation, and we don’t notice a thing–our minds all occupied with our own business (and busyness), so that we even walk past our fellow human beings without noticing them. It reminds me of the line from The Color Purple, where Alice Walker wrote, “I think it pisses God off if you walk by the color purple in a field somewhere and don’t notice it.” I once found a prayer (yes, a prayer!) that included that line, and I included it in a worship service that I was leading in England. Let’s just say it had a shocking effect on the congregation!
Sometimes, God shocks us–surprises us–with joy and moments of wonder, especially when we least expect it. When I looked out my window and saw those beautiful blossoms on the trees, I was surprised–so much so that I audibly gasped–and then got up and took a picture!
When was the last time that God surprised you? When was the last time you gasped at the beauty around you? When have you suddenly noticed something that you’re sure wasn’t there before, and it stopped you in your tracks just enough that you had to say a small “thank you” to God for the moment?
Thank you, God, for the little surprises of life. They keep me in awestruck wonder at your grace and mercy every day.