by Emily Conrad

My father-in-law hand makes the lamps in his studio. His Tiffany reproductions have been featured in local magazines and calendars for enthusiasts, and his work is on display not only in his own home, but in the homes of friends, family, and customers.

When I first saw them, I quickly decided on a favorite. The large dragonfly design is made of a color combination – blue with pops of vibrant purple and pink – that reminds me of Monet’s waterlilies.
After Adam and I were married, my in-laws gifted us a small version of this lamp, and it is a work of art.

However, having seen the lamps regularly for half of my life now, I’ve gotten used to them. Though I love the lamp they gave us, I notice it less often. Even the larger version in their house doesn’t often draw my attention.

Despite being something special, the lamps do a common job in a common area of the house.

Over the holidays, however, I noticed the lamps again, in part because we brought our exchange student with us.  Watching someone else see them through new eyes helped me to do the same. I realized again how special both the skill and the end product are.

I went over to get a closer look of that dragonfly lamp I love so much, and I snapped a picture. I went home thinking that it’s easy to stop seeing special beauty when we’re exposed to it often.

From God’s grace to the love of family, it’s easy to stop noticing the lamps that light our way. It’s easy to rely on the good gifts of God and see by them without stopping to appreciate them for the gifts they are.

I’m pretty sure most of us would call ourselves busy. We’re working and living and dreaming and loving, but let’s never be too busy to see. This world was created by a loving God “who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly realms in Christ.” (Ephesians 1:3 b, NET)

That’s a lot of blessing to see and to light the way.

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