What a Wonderful World . . .

How do people pick favorites?

Favorite food? What?! Ummm . . . all of it . . . ever. I love food.

Favorite book? Or top two or three? The bible notwithstanding because it is way more than a book and is obviously the greatest “book” of all time, but beyond the bible, I wouldn’t even know where to begin. It would be more like, “Here’s my list of 500 favorite books and counting.”

Favorite scripture? I have about eight dozen.

Favorite author? Nope. Not even going there.

Favorite movie? Depends on my mood. Do I want to laugh . . . cry . . . suspend reality? I mean, there are a solid 20+ on my list.

Favorite actor/actress? Well, I tried to do this one the other day, only to look at other people’s answers and think, “Oh yeah . . . I like him too . . . and her . . . and her . . . and him . . .”

Favorite color? I can do this one . . . blue. Decidedly blue. But also, there are so many beautiful colors. Emerald green . . . deep purple . . . yellow is a good one too . . . a pop of pink here and there . . . and let’s not forget red . . . but I guess blue inches out the others by just a tiny bit.

My favorite place on Earth? My home overlooking farmland behind it and a quiet, green hill in front . . . a black sand beach on an island in the middle of the Pacific ocean. . . the Great Smoky Mountains on a rainy afternoon . . . looking out over Lake Tahoe while hiking the Sierra Nevadas . . . driving the countryside or the busy streets of an Eastern European country . . . a solemn, sacred church that has withstood hundreds of years of conflict and change, and yet, stands as a reminder of an ever unchanging God . . . a busy city teaming with life, lights, and vibrancy . . . my living room on a lazy Sunday afternoon playing games with my family or just reading a book . . . and I haven’t even begun to scratch the surface of all this world has to do and see. Nor have I lived all those simple, ordinary moments that make up a lifetime. So take your pick. All of it . . . any of it.

I believe my point has been made. I am incapable of picking solid favorites in any category. The clear conclusion is, I don’t pick favorites because I don’t play favorites . . . or maybe they’re all my favorite.

I’m not a particularly indecisive person. The opposite is actually true. When I need to make a decision that matters or carries weight, I can typically make it quickly and without a lot of second guessing. But ask me to pick a favorite amongst all of those choices, and I’ll struggle to choose. It’s a bit strange, and probably out of character, given my overall matter of fact, practical nature, but I think it comes down to the words of one of my favorite songs (out of dozens, obviously) . . .

What A Wonderful World
written by: Bob Thiele and George Davis Weiss
as sung by: Louis Armstrong

“I see trees of green
Red roses too
I see them bloom
For me and you
And I think to myself
What a wonderful world

I see skies of blue
And clouds of white
The bright blessed day
The dark sacred night
And I think to myself
What a wonderful world

The colors of the rainbow
So pretty in the sky
Are also on the faces
Of people going by
I see friends shaking hands
Saying, “How do you do?”
They’re really saying
“I love you”

I hear babies cry
I watch them grow
They’ll learn much more
Than I’ll never know
And I think to myself
What a wonderful world

Yes, I think to myself
What a wonderful world”

I know . . .  the most cliché song I could pick. . . but y’all know I love a good cliché. Last week, on vacation, we had the opportunity to hike to one of the most beautiful beaches I’ve ever seen . . . black sand, surrounded by cliffs . . . roaring waves that bordered volcanic rock, beautiful forests, and meandering streams . . . words cannot begin to describe and photos cannot come close to capturing what I can only refer to as “indescribable beauty”. And as I sat there, on a log, soaking it all in, the thought I had on repeat in my brain was, “This is one of the most amazing places, amongst thousands of utterly amazing places, on this planet God created.”

That’s the thing, there are countless places and endless moments of unimaginable beauty in this world in which we live. Some of them are those life altering moments and world famous sights that we’ll never forget. They’ll stand out as “that time we visited/saw/experienced . . .”. But some are those everyday, super ordinary moments that we may or may not remember tomorrow or next week . . . that will fade into the background of the busyness of life. But they’re all wonderful . . . they’re all beautiful . . . they’re all my favorites. Because our Creator truly has created an absolutely wonderful world.

And because I want to try to share just a little of that beauty . . . Pololu Valley on The Big Island, Hawaii

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