Summertime is a time for stepping back and taking a break from our very hectic pace of life and enjoying some much needed quality time outdoors.
I look forward to the warm temperatures and relaxed schedule that summer provides for me so that I might work on new projects; make progress on my stack of books and try some new recipes. (This week, the food of Spain:)
Yes, Summertime and the liven is easy…
So I urge you to slow down and take in the beauty of your surroundings this weekend. (As I type this, I can hear in the distance a faint call of the train whistle and the happy songbird that is gently singing me into a new day;)
Take a moment to enjoy this beautiful painting by the French post-impressionist George Seurat. I have always loved his work and his Bathers in Asnieres was the idyllic scene that soothed my soul this week.
Seurat’s paintings are famous for his use of little dots of color that are placed next to each other. He believed that rather than mixing his colors, our eyes should experience the vibration of the tensional pull created when two contrasting colors are placed next to each other. Amazing that we can find such peace amid the co-exsistance of polar opposites…but in this painting, Seurat creates for us a new kind of vision and proves that a beautiful life is possible amid opposing forces.
Notice how he has carefully placed each individual in his band of brothers, as they are lost in thought, and sunbathing on the banks of a river on a peaceful Sunday afternoon. No one is invading the other’s space, instead he creates a relaxed harmony within each of us as we realize we are viewing something sacred and holy. Notice the care with which he has painted the reflections of the boating party and bridge in the distance. Imagine the warmth of the sun as it shines down and casts a shadow behind them.
This week, I encourage you to find an open air space to enjoy this kind of sacred community. Pack a picnic, put your cell phones away, and travel to a park or beach to enjoy the summer sunshine among your local neighbors. Instead of viewing your friends on social media, experience them in real time and let yourself enjoy the mix of people in your community. See them and begin to imagine how each and every one of them are divinely and perfectly made by God…
Summertime is a time for stepping back…putting some distance between our day to day worries and finding God’s peace in a new perspective of the world. Take a breathe and enjoy these scenes from space paired with the following scriptures:)
O Lord our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth! When I consider your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place, What is man that you are mindful of him, the son of man that you care for him?You made him a little lower than the heavenly beings and crowned him with glory and honor.
O lord our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth! ~ Psalm 8: 1, 3-5
Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink, or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than cloths?
…Your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own. ~ Matthew 6: 25, 31-34