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Leaving a Trail of Beauty

“Leave things better than you found them.”

I have no idea when I first heard this, but it has had a powerful effect on my life and relationship with the Lord. Every time I am conscious of this quote wherever I am and whatever I’m doing has the potential to be used by God.  His Spirit shows me how the situation could be used for His glory.  Whether it is picking up litter from the walkway, smiling at someone, or washing dishes, He gives me a glimpse of what beauty my actions will bring about.

That piece of trash might have stumbled an elderly man or reinforced the enemies lie that this world is too dirty and messed up to redeem.  That smile might be the little ray of hope for a woman who is suffering from an unseen disability.  Those clean dishes might provide the opportunity to talk about some difficulty my daughter is going through while making cookies together.

God uses His children to spread the beautiful fruits of the spirit in the dry and dark places.  Joy, love, peace, patience, kindness…they are all necessary for the soul to know its worth to Him. They stand in stark contrast to their surroundings like a rose bush growing in the midst of a landfill.  They stop you in your tracks.

The smile and encouragement of a stranger when you are having a difficult day. 

The open compassionate arms of a mother when a child is hurt.

The thank you card that comes when you are weary of doing good.

We have the opportunity to leave a trail of beauty wherever we go.

One of the things I love about my home state is the story of Lady Bird Johnson’s inspiration to spread wildflower seeds along Texas highways.  If you’ve never driven in Texas we have long stretches of highways from one place to another.  You can drive for hours and still be in our great state.  But in the spring and early summer a beautiful reminder of our prairie days blooms.

Bluebonnets on a Texas Highway

Bluebonnets, Indian Paintbrushes, Evening Primrose, Buttercups among others all spring to life and remind us that someone took the time to spread some seeds to bless us for generations.

So how will our actions bless those around us?  How will you leave a trail of beauty today?

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