Faith, Homeschool, Nature

Beauty in Chaos

Though the snowy view out my window testifies to the contrary —SPRING is emerging in the northern latitudes!

Along with long awaited green, spring ushers in the arrival of the constellations Leo, Auriga and Boōtes; showcasing their brilliant stars Regulus, Capella and Arcturus, respectively. Spring also promises sightings of Venus, Jupiter and Mercury on the dawn horizon.

I’m a star gazer. Consequently our homeschool library housed more than one cool astronomy book. When our kids were young, “tail-gate party” meant driving dad’s old white pick-up out into a farm field, piling into the bed, pouring hot chocolate from a thermos and searching the night sky for constellations.

I still remember the excitement when Hubble began transmitting deep space data never ‘seen’ before (I happened to be studying Earth & Space science at MSU around that time). The images were captivating; especially those magnificent nebulae. There is nothing quite so exquisite in all of space. I was in love!

Orion Nebula
The Orion Nebula

There is ethereal, nearly indescribable beauty in a nebula. No other object in the cosmos offers such a spectacular and mesmerizing display of color.

The irony is that a nebula is really a massive mess —literally. A nebula is created in the catastrophic explosion of a supernova, which sends a chaotic sea of dust and gases whirling into space. When light passes through the debris it is reflected and refracted by millions of fragments, allowing its character to be revealed in a way not displayed by the stars. What begins as a catastrophe becomes a celestial work of art.

I feel a life lesson coming on, don’t you?

Like the coming of spring, there are aspects of life that are beautifully predictable:

“As long as the earth endures,
seedtime and harvest,
cold and heat,
summer and winter,
day and night
will never cease.” Genesis 8:22

However life is plenty unpredictable as well. We’ve all experienced seasons when life just seems to go from one disaster to the next. Things barely begin to fall back into place when the force holding it all together suddenly gives way and everything disintegrates, once again, into fragments and broken pieces.

Those are unsettling times. Our human heart grows weak when order is lost. We want the details of our life to coalesce as quickly as possible. We desperately attempt to gather up the pieces and put it all back together.

Perhaps some of the stress in our life comes from assuming it is meant to be orderly. Is it necessary that life be tidy to be beautiful? Is certainty a necessary precursor to joy? Maybe our lives were never meant to fit neatly onto the pages of a planner. Perhaps having it all together is not a requirement for life to be beautiful.

The same God who created a universe of natural law, mathematical predictability, and order —chose for a bit of chaos to be part of it.

Some would say there can be beauty despite the chaos. I wonder if perhaps chaos is part of the beauty. Standing in the middle of life, our eye is easily drawn to details that seem messy and disordered. Perhaps if we could zoom out to a telescope view we might begin to see that there is design and purpose to it all.

Maybe your life feels like a hot mess at this very moment. Don’t try to pick up all the pieces and put it back together. It’s beyond you.

The Orion Nebula

Remember that your life purpose is not to have it all figured out. It isn’t to accomplish. It isn’t to attain. It is simply to allow Him to transform you. It may take a few messes, some brokenness and uncertainty, but God is faithful and working in all of it.

He will draw all of the pieces together in His time – through His power and according to His design for you and for your life. Even a nebula, albeit on a cosmic time scale, will eventually coalesce and take shape.

In the meantime allow His Light to reflect off even the messy bits, and His awesome splendor and power will be displayed through your life. When we allow God to be in control, there is beauty in the chaos.

©2018 Tabitha Meglich

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