"We no longer dare to believe in beauty and we make of it a mere appearance in order the more easily to dispose of it." Hans Balthasar. Sobering words that I find to be increasingly true. In our busyness, in our rush to record everything on a smartphone, unable to live in the moment, we are losing our ability to "behold" the beauty that God puts before us every day. To "behold" is "to contemplate with pleasure." King David knew of its importance in Psalm 27 when he expressed his sole desire to "behold the beauty of the Lord." Part of God's common grace, beauty calls out to every human soul, gently drawing, beckoning, declaring "there is more! There is He who made this!"
The human mind is a creative, intellectual marvel. Science is only beginning to understand it's depth and capacity. For example, there are more neuronal connections in our minds than stars in our galaxy. There's a universe in our heads! Even so, we seem to pay it less attention than we should, especially as it relates to our faith. Paul says we are transformed by the "renewal of our minds." (Romans 12:2). In other words, our spiritual transformation happens as we cultivate our minds – as we explore the wonder of both God and the world He has made – the world in which He has called us to live and serve. The more we know, the more we come to know both the wonder of God AND His good, perfect, and pleasing will for our lives – a will we know to be His call to live as Christ – as those poured out for the life of the world. One of the ways we love our neighbor well is when we turn our knowledge into service for the greater good of our human family.