God’s handwriting

The waterfront at Bar Harbor, Maine, June 2012

The waterfront at Bar Harbor, Maine, June 2012

“Never lose an opportunity of seeing anything that is beautiful; for beauty is God’s handwriting – a wayside sacrament.  Welcome it in every fair face, in every fair sky, in every fair flower, and thank God for it as a cup of blessing.”  —Charles Kingsley

Travel is one of my favorite ways of searching for lovely sights, but it’s not necessary to be in a gorgeous town such as Bar Harbor to catch glimpses of beauty.  As Kingsley’s quote implies, it’s all around us if we welcome it.

Two practices have helped me feed my soul with beauty: walking, and taking photos.  With the advent of digital photography, taking pictures is practically as inexpensive as walking.  I hope you will welcome beauty wherever you find it, but today I especially encourage you to wander outdoors in search of “wayside sacraments” that are easy to miss in the rush of everyday life.

If you have a digital camera, try taking a few photos of what you find.  You might be surprised how good a photographer you can be!  But if you’d rather not take photos with a camera, take them with your eyes and memory.  May we all cherish this “cup of blessing” that will lift our spirits, spark our creativity and energize our minds.


  1. Mike Bertoglio

    Great post Julia. Someone said God wrote two books- one, the Bible and two nature.

    Looking at a jar of Jiff PB- ingredients, corn syrup solids, sugar, pea protein, fully hydrogenated oils- rape seed and cotton oil. No wonder I like it so much. So addicted to sugar.

    • Yes, and as I mentioned, cotton is not a food crop so it doesn’t have the same restrictions in terms of chemicals used on it, or so I’m told. In any case, I have not touched Jiff in years. Believe it or not, once you get used to using pure peanut butter, which is made from one ingredient: peanuts, you will probably never want to go back the kind with all the additives. Maybe it’s my imagination, but I think all these additives tend to affect the taste of foods more than we realize. I’m glad you liked the post – thanks for being here!

  2. Photography is one great way to observe and enjoy nature. Some shots show us more than what we actually saw while on the spot. Loved that shot – lovely composition. His ‘handwriting’ is amazing.

    • Bindu, I have noticed this myself many times: I capture things in photographs that I don’t remember seeing, especially the smaller details. I am so glad you like the photos! My son once said “how can you see anything when you are always looking through the camera?” And I told him “I see more through the camera than I do without it!” 🙂 Hope you are doing well. It’s always so nice to hear from you.

  3. Sheila

    Julia, our “cup of blessing” came just a few minutes ago as an earlier storm was moving offshore just as the sun was setting. The massive clouds above the calmed ocean, with the beautiful pink hues as the lightning strikes danced their show, was a grand finale to our day!
    I so hope your day held some normalcy for you. I think of y’all so often and continue to have a special prayer always. Hope all is well…… Sheila

    • Sheila, thanks so much for your beautiful “snapshot” which was a note of cheer at the end of a long hard day. I love the way you described it! I wish I could tell you today held normalcy, but it was just the opposite – it held things I didn’t realize could happen, for both Jeff and Matt. Our storm just seems to keep growing, but we are trying to hold on. Thanks for being here for me each day with a note of cheer and a promise of prayers! God bless you my friend.

  4. Nancy

    I thought this might be BH area when I saw the pic. I have so many wonderful shots of our week there. It truly is a beautiful area. Blessings!

    • Nancy, Bar Harbor is one of our favorite towns. I’m glad you have some good photos from there – it’s quite a photogenic place, isn’t it? Blessings to you and your boys. Things are crazy now; I’ll catch you up as soon as I can.

  5. We are so lucky to live with the technology we have today. Every precious moment can be saved and shared at a moments notice. It’s a double edged sword, but as an optimist I must believe it’s for more good than bad.

    • I totally agree! I think that just knowing things can be saved might make us realize what a precious thing it is to have custody of each moment, and how important it is to use our time for what is good, happy, right and wise. Thanks for being here!


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