Usually I watch the evening news out of the corner of my eye while attending to something else in my lap – browsing Pinterest or Facebook on my iPad, folding laundry, working on some needlework. But one night last week, a picture popped up on the large screen that yanked my eyes and heart into sharp focus.
It was the photo of people searching through fields of sunflowers for wreckage of the downed Malaysian jetliner.
Here’s the thing that got me about this picture. We are accustomed to looking for even the smallest hint of beauty rising up out of ashes of destruction. But in this photo, these men are keeping their eyes open for any sign of death and destruction that may lie beneath all the beauty. They are looking for charred luggage, plane fuselage, a black box…and most heartbreaking of all – the remains of the victims.
I couldn’t help but admire these men in the fields – men who had the courage to wade into the beauty, pull back the stalks and look for the ugly. To remove the remains of the devastation.
We all have our fields of flowers – our smiling faces, our pretty clothes, coiffed hair and polished nails…our I’m good, thanks for asking.
But beneath all that is beautiful lies the broken pieces of our lives, the parts that have been shot out of our sunny skies to lie in ruin close to our hearts. Dark charred places that nobody ever sees.
We long for someone to wade into our yellow fields, bend back the flowers and say I see this. I care about it. Tell me how it came to be here. Let me help you carry it out. If we can’t carry it out, let me sit here in this field and weep with you.
Proverbs 20:5 says ~
“…the heart of a man is like deep water, but a man of understanding draws it out.”
There is a fine art to this digging deep and drawing out of our hearts.
But oh how we desire for someone to take the time and have the understanding to pull back the pretty and ask tender loving questions about the ugly.
And may we be brave enough to wade – carefully, slowly, lovingly – into others’ fields, to all that lies beneath the beauty.