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Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Light, Space, and Beauty

A CNN presenter closed his program about great architecture with this statement, “We all yearn for light, space, and beauty.”

I agree. I love architecture and have had the privilege of seeing many great buildings. Some are ancient or are patterned after ancient themes. And some, like one of my personal favorites, the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, Spain, are very modern and sculptural. I love the play of light outside and inside a wonderful structure. I enjoy surprises in architecture, like the off-centered spot of light inside the Toledo cathedral (also in Spain, finished in 1493). I love how spaces are defined by light. I also appreciate a truly beautiful building. My vote for the most beautiful one I ever saw would go to the OpĂ©ra in Paris. There’s no way to describe it! Many soft colors of marble, the symmetry, the mixture of marble and dark bronze, its forms, sculpture . . . . It is truly beautiful.

The presenter’s statement about everyone yearning for light, space, and beauty prompted me to ponder what the Bible says about God.

LIGHT   God is light, and in him is no darkness at all (from 1 John 1:5).

SPACE   But who is able to build him an house, seeing the heaven and heaven of heavens cannot contain him? (2 Chronicles 2:6a)
      It is he that sitteth upon the circle of the earth (This sounds like a photo from outer space!), and the inhabitants thereof are as grasshoppers; that stretcheth out the heavens as a curtain, and spreadeth them out as a tent to dwell in (Isaiah 40:22).

BEAUTY   One thing have I desired of the LORD, that will I seek after; that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the LORD, and to enquire in his temple (Psalm 27:4).

The next time I contemplate fabulous architecture here on earth, I’ll consider Him Who is light and is beautiful and can’t be contained by space. 

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