Beauty in the Weeds - Living MindfullyThe past few days I have been in South Dakota. Each time I am home, we seem to make a pilgrimage to what is left of our family farm. Walking around what used to be our garden, much of it has been overtaken by remnants of weeds and lots of springtime grass. In the mix of it all, the lilac flowers bloom. Beauty in the mix, too often missed.

This image triggered in me something about how, in the maze of life, we can easily ignore the beauty hidden in the twigs, weeds, and overcrowded growth. Yet there is beauty present, when we take the time to soak it in, think about it, and be grateful for it.

Maybe it takes being miles from a hustle-bustle civilization to realize this.

  • Our surroundings are noisy.
  • Our lives cluttered.
  • Our time overcrowded.

When the racket clears, the lesson here is for us to notice the beauty around us and be inspired by it. Taking a pause to breathe in what is present can only enliven our spirit and refresh our mind.

One can look at this in the reverse, too. We all have beauty within, and we want it to bloom through and be observed. It is not about being loud, but it is about using our colorful nature in ways to make a place brighter and better. In here lies the second lesson of the flower in the weeds.

We need to clear our own clutter rather than just wait for someone to walk by and take note. Bringing clarity of purpose to our work and interactions will clear the path of vision for others to see who we are and what we can do.

The final lesson of the beauty in the weeds is that it all will fade. The color will disappear and who will notice what once was? The answer stands in the people who spot it during our full bloom and by the seeds we leave behind. New growth arises from how we have lived our life, if lived well and with full purpose. Although our life will fade one day, it is how others will carry parts of it forward, adding their own splendor into life’s mix.

From one image caught as I walked by, three lessons spring.

Lesson 1: Stop to see the beauty of what others can do and how they enrich us with their works and words.

Lesson 2: Clear your clutter, using your gifts fully and enabling others to see and embrace.

Lesson 3: Leave good works and thoughts in your wake. Leave it so the future will remember and carry some forward, adding to it with their own robust spirit and good works.

There are life lessons all around. We just need to see the beauty in the weeds.