What is the purpose of beauty? Every day, we’re surrounded by a kaleidoscope of enrapturing glory—magic and wonder. Questions and mysteries await us at every turn: the fabric of the universe. But what is the point of it all?
Some would say wonder is a useless pursuit—and perhaps it is, for Wonder in itself does not profit, nor is it incredibly practical. It accomplishes nothing in terms of money or shelter, and yet Wonder touches a deeper part of us: the essence of our nature; our desire to explore, create, and understand. If all we live for is profit, then wonder—beauty—is absolutely and utterly useless. And life is astonishingly empty.
Everything around us was created for a reason. Every ray of sunlight and blade of grass; every raindrop and petal; all the stars in the sky and the souls of every one of us. To look at it all, one might think it extravagant. And that’s exactly what it is.
We live in an extravagant world, filled to the brim with mysteries to be marveled at—both the things we know and the things we can never know. I believe God created beautiful things to be appreciated, because He is Himself an extravagant God, and beauty is His way of revealing Himself to us.
The Neglect of Beauty
I saw a video this week on the topic of beauty, in which it was said that, “He who sneers at [beauty], … whether he admits it or not, can no longer pray—and soon, will no longer be able to love.”
Beauty is humanity’s gift from God. It’s a way for our hearts to commune with His, and to neglect it starves our souls of all that we need to truly feel alive. It hardens us, separating us from all that is good and true in this world. The simplicity and purity of beauty is something we cannot afford to overlook.
Why We Need Beautiful Things
Some would say this world, this life is about survival, but I think that’s a pretty finite mindset. After all, what value does survival have without beauty—without purpose—without hope?
The beauty around us affords us many things—luxuries, perhaps—that make life worth living:
- It stimulates our creativity
- It connects us to God
- It fosters a positive mindset
- It prompts gratitude
- It is simultaneously restful and exhilarating
The Purpose of Beauty
So yes, perhaps beauty is extravagant; impractical; useless. But its purpose goes far beyond mere usefulness and into communion with the very heart of our Creator, the very Face of beauty; the Maker of it all; the Weaver of all the intricacies of the universe. Need there be more purpose?
Today I want to challenge you to seek out the beauty around you. Breathe it in. Acknowledge the mysteries and the wonder, and just simply be—as impractical as you wish.
- What beautiful things do you appreciate?
- What have you done to deliberately seek out beauty and wonder this week?
- What did you learn from it?