Five Minute Friday scribblings, Perspective, Trials

Beauty: Looking For Beauty

@JeanneTakenaka +Jeanne Takenaka

Our Five Minute Friday prompt this week is—BEAUTY. This largely unedited “rough draft” form of writing stretches this perfectionist, in the best of ways. We write for five minutes on a given word. If you’re interested in learning more about 5-Minute Fridays, check out the Five Minute Friday website. Or, click on the link at the bottom of this post. As you read my simpler Friday posts, I hope you’ll join in the conversation!


The Weather Channel lied to us on Monday. What was predicted to be a cold, breezy day morphed into a snowy, gray day. I always look for the beauty in a day. I see it in fog. In clouds. In sunlight.

But a gray day is still  . . . a gray day. Not as much color. Dreary. One of those days when a girl wants to stay inside, eat popcorn and watch movies or read a book until the sun come back out.

Tuesday started out foggy, but by the time I dropped the boys off at school, the sky was a brilliant blue. Snow-tipped trees brushed it with pure contrast. My heart was happy!

It got me thinking about how we go through seasons in our lives that are dreary.


Sometimes the hard passes and blue skies return.

Sometimes, we walk through the Hard for the rest of our days.

One thing I’ve found is, if I can look for the beauty in the midst of the Hard, my heart is often pointed back to God.

When circumstances overwhelm me with discouragement and even despair, it’s difficult to see beyond the colorless pain.

When God reveals Himself color begins to tint the gray. When I look beyond the pain of circumstances and choose to cling to faith in Him instead of reliance on myself? My eyes can see hints of His beauty in the middle of the hard season.

God is always faithful. We may not always see how God works, but we can always be assured that He is there in the hard seasons with us.

If we seek His face, He often reveals glimpses of Himself. When the days are gray, let’s look for His beauty, shall we?

What about you? When have you seen God’s beauty in the midst of your hardship? What aspect of God’s creation is the most beautiful to you?

Click to Tweet: If I can look for the beauty in the midst of the Hard, my heart is often pointed back to God

I’m linking up with Five Minute Friday—Beauty


26 thoughts on “Beauty: Looking For Beauty”

  1. Amen! It’s so true that we don’t always see how God works, but we can always see beauty if we just look for it. I think I find it easier to see beauty in the natural world (but not so easy to see it in people–which are part of the natural world). This is something I need to work on. If I look for and see beauty in people, I find I have more patience with them and I’m not so critical.


    1. Anita, it does seem easier to find the beauty in the natural world than in people. Sometimes, I have to release my expectations of others so I can see beauty in and through them. And yes, I’m the same. When I see beauty in someone, it’s easier to extend grace to them. Great thoughts, friend!


  2. Nothing wrong with a popcorn-and-movie day! I think God gives us grayness sometimes so that we can enjoy just that. Last time i went to the cinema was just such a day, to see “The Desolation of Smaug”; knowing that it was cold and gray outside made the theatre seem warmer, and the popcorn more delicious.

    In a life that has become a kind of endless loop of pain and fatigue, I find that I have to be intentional about seeking out beauty, and most often find it at my feet, in the occasional piece of quartz hiding in the gravel of the drive.


    1. I agree, Andrew. Popcorn and movie days can be refreshing. I so appreciate your perspective and your honesty. I think you’re right. God gives us days when we get a little break from life as we know it. I was thinking you probably also see beauty in your dogs’ love and attention and expressions. 🙂 Quartz, when it sparkles, is beautiful. I’m praying for you and Barb, friend.


  3. Jeanne, I love this honesty. It’s true. Sometimes we live with the Hard our whole lives. We don’t immediately see the redemption. It’s difficult to see God at work in that, isn’t it? But he’s still there… You’ve given me a lot to think about!


    1. I like your use of redemption, Annie. There are times when it is very difficult to see God at work. I guess sometimes we need to cling to the truth that He is at work, He is redeeming the broken places in our lives. We just may not see it until we are with Him face-to-face. Thanks for sharing your thoughts here!


  4. so true jeanne:) loved the photos too. what a beautiful day it turned into. this has been a week that i’m getting a glimmer of sunshine. maybe there is a little light for my husband. some meds were changed. we’ll see if it is long lasting or if our hard stays on. either way, GOD is faithful.


    1. I’m so glad you’re getting a glimmer of sunshine, Martha. Seeing positive changes when meds are changed is an encouragement. I hope the docs find the right mix of meds for your husband. May we always remember God IS faithful. Always.


  5. ”When God reveals Himself color begins to tint the gray.” I just love this Jeanne! Such encouragement for those hard, gray times in life! Your message is a powerful one! Thanks for sharing it! Cindy


  6. it’s a change of perspective isn’t it? One can see only the hard or one can look deeper and see the good. Doesn’t always make the hard better…but it can make it easier. 🙂


    1. Yes, Annette. It is a change of perspective to look for beauty in the hard seasons. We have to look beyond the familiar and see what God is waiting to reveal to us. And you’re right. Seeing beauty doesn’t always (or even often) make the hard better, but it can make it easier. Thanks for sharing that truth! Have a great weekend!


  7. What beautiful photos! Winter is definitely a picture (and reminder) of the hard for me. Literally and otherwise! But even in the winter – there is so much beauty. And just as God faithfully brings the spring…He faithfully provides all that we need to endure whatever season we might be in.


    1. Jennifer, thank you so much for your visit. Sorry for the delay in responding. Winter can definitely be the picture of hard seasons. But, even in winter, there are glimpses of beauty. I like what you said about how God faithfully brings the spring and provides what we need to endure in each season of life. Great insights.


  8. Jeanne, I enjoy how you describe gray here. It is dreary at first glance, but o so lovely in whole. I’ve been enjoying your Instagram photos of the dreary winter that passes your gaze and I too, have seen some gray. On my head! I am growing more and more accustomed to it and I think to me it is capping a season in my life. So thankful for the gray that seems dreary but is so significant and valuable to the cycle of life and transformation!


    1. Erendira, I’m so sorry to take so long to respond back. Thank you for your encouraging words. It’s kind of a gift, sometimes, to see beauty amid the dreary, isn’t it? if it makes you feel better, I have seen more gray crowning my head too. 😉 I’m thankful for how gray can precede transformation. Great thoughts!


  9. When I think about the hard seasons, I remember how everything felt amplified–emotions, health, events, the weather even! Maybe the hard seasons have taught me that being fully alive is when we are like an amplifier, taking in all, resonating with the sounds of our world, and being fully present.


    1. Lynn, please forgive my delayed response. You’re so right. Everything feels amplified during hard seasons. I love your thoughts about being an amplifier and living fully alive. May we both seek to be fully present in our world, in the lives of those around us. I always appreciate your take on thing, Lynn!


  10. I have yet to miss God if I take a moment to look for him. When we were technically homeless (since our home was in AZ and we were living in a friend’s basement) I saw God in the generosity of people who opened their doors to us and prayed for us. Those prayers meant the world.

    Lovely post! I will be reminding myself to always look for the Lord in the midst of the trial and those gray times.


    1. Loved your words here, Kelly. God tells us that, if we look for Him, if we seek Him with all our hearts, we will find Him. It’s always good to look for God in the uncertain seasons of life. It’s amazing how He moves on the hearts of His people to help us when we need it, isn’t it? Thank you, always, for your visits.


  11. Yes gray days can be depressing or beautiful. When driving is not required, I actually love to see the fog as it shifts with it’s mysterious quality. It hides things and reveals others. God has a sense of humor and foggy froggy days can reveal it if we look for it. When it hides the mountains, we just say “they went on vacation”. God smiles thru the fog and thru His Sonshine. His love can defeat any grey mood~ smile and find His glory in it.


    1. I’m with you, Mom. I like watching the fog roll in, wispy and thickening. Seeing items silhouetted by backlight always makes me want to stop and snap a photo. 😉 I’m glad our God has a sense of humor. I like how you look for that aspect of God. 🙂


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