Beauty in the Ordinary

Do you look for beauty in the ordinary things of life?

"Beauty in the ordinary" with image of bright red berries on a bush

It’s easy to take “ordinary” beauty for granted. But it’s out there, and will enrich our soul and spirit if we slow down enough to look for it!

Ordinary Beauty through the Eyes of Others

One fall color season here in central Minnesota was extra lovely for me because I experienced it partially through the eyes of two important people in my life.

The first was my sister, Lisa. She moved to Mexico 25 years ago and hadn’t seen fall colors since. Even though she had been back many, many times over the years, she never made the trip in autumn. So that year she decided to take her vacation during our fall color season.

Because I was on the lookout for colors for her, I noticed even more of them than usual. I planned a Girls’ Weekend Getaway with the women in our family (my mom, two sisters, two sisters-in-law, daughter and niece) to northwest Wisconsin.

The Lord blessed us with a beautiful rental home and absolutely perfect weather. We thoroughly enjoyed our time together, a couple lovely hikes and the great expanse of Lake Superior.

The second person was my friend, Kirsten. She and her family have been living in the South for almost 30 years, and finally moved back Up North.

That first fall back, she soaked in all the fall color she could and posting her pics on Instagram. It was so fun to see her enthusiasm.

Ordinary Beauty Comes in Different Sizes

Have you ever thought that beauty comes in different sizes?

Beauty can be immense. I love this quote from one of my favorite books, Jane Eyre, by author Charlotte Bronte:

“We know that God is everywhere; but certainly we feel His presence most when His works are on the grandest scale spread before us.”

Beauty on a grand scale looks something like this:

overlooking forests of fall color
Fall color covers the hills in northern Minnesota

And this:

sunset over lake superior
The setting sun paints the surface of Lake Superior several shades of gold

And this:

Long's Peak, Rocky Mountain National Park
The majestic Colorado mountains

And beauty also comes in small packages. Sometimes it’s hidden away from everyone except those who slow down to notice it.

Another favorite quote is this one from poet, Sara Teasdale:

“Look for a lovely thing and you will find it,
It is not far—
It never will be far.”

Hidden beauty in small, ordinary ways looks like this:

tinges of red on sumac leaves
Early fall color in a still-green forest
black eyed susan flowers in a meadow
Cheery meadow flowers
black and white butterfly on greens
This winged beauty rests on a leaf

When we look off the path—or up…or behind us—we see things we would’ve missed otherwise.

One of the best things about making Nature a regular part of life is being surrounded by this kind of beauty—both grand and hidden—everywhere.

Ordinary Beauty Comes in Different Ways

And beauty isn’t just for our eyes. Our ears can hear it in the birds, a gurgling creek, waves hitting rocks, the breeze blowing through the tree tops.

We can smell it in the rain, the woods, the ocean, the wildflowers.

We can feel it in the warm sun, a cool breeze, an icy mountain stream.

We don’t all find the same things beautiful—and that’s good! That’s part of the uniqueness we all have.

Often we find beauty in and among the people we’re with. In the kind gestures and words of both those we know well and total strangers.

So, next time you’re outside, pay attention to the beauty all around you. Whether you’re hiking, paddling, camping, climbing—whatever you love to do, you’ll find beauty around you.

Notice the grand, but also look for the hidden.

It won’t be far!

It’s never far.

part of a waterfall with greenery and wildflowers
Falling water adds life to a cliffside

Beauty in all its forms is one of God’s most wonderful gifts.

Here’s more…

Sharon Brodin