People often say that “beauty is in the eye of the beholder,” and I say that the most liberating thing about beauty is realizing that you are the beholder. This empowers us to find beauty in places where others have not dared to look, including inside ourselves.  Salma Hayek

One morning in Costa Rica, I awoke to find the volcano perfectly etched against the dawn light. As I watched over my morning coffee, the mountain grew a cap: a perfectly circular cloud called a lenticular cloud. As the sun rose and the cloud grew, the mist of the rain forest began to rise. Over time the volcano was shrouded in clouds once again. That was a breathtaking morning, and I was so grateful to have been awake to see it. Beholding the symmetry of the mountain in the pearly light, over the lush canopy, while hearing the birds calling back and forth to each other, was an opportunity to behold the Presence of Life Itself.

This is the same wonder I experience when I gaze into the face of my son, enjoy a moment of peace in my home, or experience the power of prayer. Everywhere we turn, there is an opportunity to behold the Presence of the Divine. It’s easy to see in the drama of nature or in a foreign land. Yet it also is present right in our own backyards and in the familiar faces and places of our ordinary lives. Your only job is to be present to it, so you can behold it.

Spiritual Contemplation: Where in your life, person, place, or experience, can you behold beauty rather than the something else you may be focusing on?

Affirmation: I cast my gaze upon what is beautiful right here and right now. I behold the Present of the ONE in my life today.