Wednesday, February 22, 2006

It Looks so Natural!

Last night found me once again admiring the skill involved in Olympic figure skating. I was compelled to watch because four years ago, my wife and I enjoyed watching Sarah Hughes become "gold medalist Sarah Hughes." This year, her sister Emily was rushed into the Olympics last minute. Often called by her sister Sarah's name by accident, Emily commented humorously (and wisely), "I don't mind being compared to a gold medalist."

As I watched last night, I thought about how natural and elegant skating appears - even though it requires such strenuous effort. It is only when a skater or two takes a tumble onto the ice (and downward in the rankings) that we fully appreciate the next skater's successful spin or jump.

Could it be said that everything beautiful is buttressed by hard work?

Consider any work of art. What delights our imagination, or simply decorates our living room, was produced through training, patience, practice, and skill.

A wedding ceremony may be elegant, and even moving, yet it is made possible only by months (sometimes years) of careful planning.

Even more moving is the faithful husband who, at eighty years old, still opens the door for his fading bride. A simple act, yet accomplished through years of working hard on that marriage - so that it remains intact so many years later.

And can anything surpass the beauty of God's creation? I've seen the California sunset, the Grand Canyon, and my share of brilliant autumn trees, and I say no. This beauty is possible because of God's incomprehensible creative power, his great feats of creation - and also his daily sustanence. And he makes it all look so natural!

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