A Sea of Beauty.

So… a few days ago I was editing a photo in Adobe Lightroom.

In the midst of adjustments of brightness and filters and toning something happened. I had already been looking at the picture, but then I actually saw it. So much beauty in each pixel of the picture and the person. Each detail a revelation. 

A photographic revelation saturated with unfiltered GLORY right in front of me, delicately and carelessly concealed.

One simple shutter click and this infinite moment with all its mystery was frozen.

But the beauty of this picture was a revelation in another way as well… when I looked up from my computer screen the simple world around me was also gleaming with new beauty. It was like my filter had been dislodged and I could actually see the beauty that had always been there all around me. The transcendent beauty in every human was now visible. 

I was having an emotional overload at Colectivo Coffee. There was too much beauty to handle and I was the only one who was swimming in this incredible secret… It’s how I imagine LSD might feel.

I fought off tears…

I fought with the urge to grab strangers and tell them how beautiful they were…

I fought with the captivating need to look, to stare at people who had now become as significant to me as I was anonymous to them…

There was a young mom with her kids and the beauty of her small Interactions with them…

a group of friends celebrating…

a pastor caring for someone…

lots of couples having lunch, or coffee…

an amazingly powerful woman on the phone with her clever negotiation skills and charm to make ‘deals’ happen…

… all these beautiful People laughing and crying together - each impossibly unique and gloriously complex and mysterious and wonderful.

Overloaded with the emotional weight of exposure to so much unfiltered beauty, I could feel all of these souls in a ‘Beautiful Mind’ sort of way. The collective beauty of the coffee shop’s congregation overwhelmed me and washed over me in waves of sunshine and hope.

I wish I could have bottled it.

The microscopic details that made my new loved ones so beautiful… pores, and skin and hair and teeth and laughter unique to each human like a fingerprint and a choir of unique voice and height and fashion and their eyes and what they were doing…  

glorious.

all of it.

All of it hitting me at once in my little chair at the far end of the coffee shop. It struck me that this was the truth about these people. They had always been this beautiful, this precious, this glorious. We look at them every day, but we don’t see them. There is so much beauty in others and in ourselves, but we don’t trust it or believe it. 

I wonder, if we really saw each other and ourselves in our unfiltered glory, would things change? Maybe we don’t need to focus on the ugliness so easily visible in the world, but on the truth that the ugliness conceals:

Glorious, immutable beauty. Everywhere and in everyone.

 I want my life to be about this beauty and this truth. I want to live and speak and love and work in a way that points people to this truth and reveals the dazzling sunshine hidden beneath our skin.

The world is full of breathtakingly beautiful people.

You are one of them.

Photographer + Storyteller. Pastor + Advocate. Schemer + Party commencer.