June 3, 1849.—Fresh and delicious weather. A long morning walk. Surprised the hawthorn and wild rose-trees in flower. From the fields vague and health-giving scents. The Voirons fringed with dazzling mists, and tints of exquisite softness over the Salève. Work in the fields, two delightful donkeys, one pulling greedily at a hedge of barberry. Then three little children. I felt a boundless desire to caress and play with them. To be able to enjoy such leisure, these peaceful fields, fine weather, contentment; to have my two sisters with me; to rest my eyes on balmy meadows and blossoming orchards; to listen to the life singing in the grass and on the trees; to be so calmly happy—is it not too much? Is it deserved? O let me enjoy it with gratitude. The days of trouble come soon enough and are many enough. I have no presentiment of happiness. All the more let me profit by the present. Come, kind nature, smile and enchant me! Veil from me awhile my own griefs and those of others; let me see only the folds of thy queenly mantle, and hide all miserable and ignoble things from me under thy bounties and splendors! —Amiel’s Journal
This morning, the world is laced with white, petite ice crystals cling to fingers of grass—winking in the early light. I’m out in the back yard in my robe, knee boots pulled on hastily, trying to capture beauty. Everything I touch melts and I tiptoe cautiously along the rim of this plot of land we call home. I am a clumsy giant in this fragile frozen world and diamonds crush beneath me. The birds are quiet and my hem is soaked clean through from the bending and kneeling, and I think, Just one more shot.
The kids are getting ready for school and the neighbor’s goats crash through the meadow and my bare legs are turning blue beneath this robe.
But I am standing in a wonderland and I wonder. How does the world not stop its turning in the wake of such beauty?
The things that disappear too quickly are begging to be framed.
Life is moving fast and my prayers are filled with sadness this morning, heart wrung by a hurting friend. I stand alone on this gossamer, small but seen, and I sing the Shema. I lift it all up: this beauty, that grief, all the loss a broken world must endure.
Just one more shot, I think.
And Beauty is a person; that sweet Companion who soothes the ache.
Every Monday I’ll be sharing one of my Playdates with God. I would love to hear about yours. It can be anything: outside, quiet time. Maybe it’s solitary. Maybe it’s loud and crowded. Just find Him. Be with Him. Grab my button at the bottom of the page and join us: