“The Ginger BeardMan”

photo (35)

Enjoy some vibrant colors today!

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The Dirt of Life

         BareShiny things had never tempted her. Diamond rings didn’t widen her eyes. Fancy restaurants didn’t make her feel important or sophisticated. A GQ model in a Lamborghini might make her giggle for a moment but nothing more.

What gripped her was the dirt of life. Ink under skin. Cigarette smoke stitched within a faded sweatshirt.

She liked the hum and hammer of old washing machines.

She preferred to sit on the floor or curl up in a windowsill or perch on a counter-top. The only furniture she liked was the kind with tangled sheets or this one old couch that smelled like grass.

If the dishes were dirty it rarely bothered her. Neither did laundry on the floor. When she did clean she paused every other minute to dance and enjoyed it so much that she wondered why she didn’t clean more often.

She liked choruses of frogs and singing with anyone or no one.

She liked bare feet by campfires and friends made in nights that faded into mornings before sleep could interrupt.

She liked swimming in lakes under stars. She didn’t like swimsuits.

She liked rain and puddles and fog over hidden houses.

She liked the eccentrics, people who spoke puzzles and held stories in every scar and wrinkle.

She liked mazes of alleyways with tired bricks and conversations on fire escapes or by dumpsters.

She liked to be tucked away in corners and books with tattered binding that proved the words within were well loved.

She liked to wear flannel that was too big and tank tops that were too small.

She liked walls quickly painted as canvases without frames.

She liked freckles that punctuated perfection, noses that were too big and hair so red it threatened to burn at the touch. She liked trails of blue that shown through skin, the veins that reminded her of a heart beating.

She liked to forget the blank walls of sterility and the cutting binds of sternness.

Sometimes she liked solitude, but she hated to be alone.

The Flawless Fallen

My face: I don’t like it. I dislike it almost as much as my height or my weight or my inability to say what I must when I must.

At least that used to be my mindset.

This is my face, a very artistically skewed representation… but still, my face.

Self Portrait in Pastel

My mother has always said that her teeth are too big. Obviously, this is not the case. Her teeth are the perfect size. If it weren’t for those teeth, her smile wouldn’t be quite so big. It wouldn’t reflect all the joy she carries inside.

And my mother isn’t the only one who is lovely when she doesn’t know it. Pretty much any person in front of me is bound to be observed and thought of as something remarkable.

That boy across from me at the coffee shop? One of his eyes squints ever-so-slightly more than the other when he smiles. That makes me smile too.

That little girl who just tumbled off of her spot during the christmas program? She was focusing really hard on trying to find her grandmother who is sitting in the third row. This thought makes me want to hug the little girl even more than when I first met her.

It is almost unavoidable for me to see that my mother and the brown-eyed boy at the coffee shop and the toppling girl at the Christmas program and so many others are irrevocably inarguably beautiful.

It is not that they are without fault. They are fallen. We live in a world that runs ramped with sin. There are mouths that lie, hearts that hate, minds that plot evil and hands that kill. But a gracious God offers redemption.  And that perfect God created everything. Each rock. Each tree. Each field mouse. And each person.

This perfect God does not make mistakes. So when He formed the strands of DNA in any given individual, He did not make a single mistake. That person is flawless. That person bears the personality and physical traits that God intended.

People are fallen. But they are not flawed.

God does not make mistakes.

I am no exception. And neither are you.