It's early summer and the beautyberry blossoms pale pink, leaving green berries on the tall slender stalks Louis planted along the backyard fence. Pollen-laden bees buzz about, tapping into the tiny, clustered flower's nectar.
It's with a camera in my hand and a mindset to cultivate "an eye for life's mercies" that I discover the dark purple berries of the beautyberry bush
hidden entangled in potato vines in the thickets along the creek one fall afternoon several years ago.
I hear that brothers and sisters in Christ are struggling and that others have left the faith for an ungodly lifestyle and I'm grieved that I failed to see the brokenness in their lives that led to despair.
I begin to notice beautyberry everywhere - along the back road off the highway, under the low-hanging branches of a neighbor's Australian pines, and in the dappled shade of the scrub oaks behind the pasture.
How could I have missed such glorious beauty for so many years?
And we urge you, brothers, admonish the idle, encourage the fainthearted, help the weak, be patient with them all. 1 Thessalonians 5:14 ESV
Thank You, Lord, for a camera to capture and eyes to see beauty, but I also need eyes to see the fainthearted and weak - and the wisdom and patience to love them back to You.