There is one thing I can’t do without on vacation. One thing forgotten will evoke tears and heaviness of heart. Forget and I may decide to turn around and go back home.

Can you guess what it is?

My camera. And not the one built into my phone.

My trusty Canon Rebel XT isn’t fancy but it does some good work toward remembering who I am while looking through the lens and into the bowels of creation. Practice attentiveness and become a seer of the contrasts God creates.

Because the beauty of life abides not in our perfectly framed moments but in the contrasts of our imperfections. Of dark resting beside light and highlighted for others to notice. Yeah, redemption, that’s where real beauty resides.

Bend down, look through the lens of life and frame the details while lingering long in the exhale. Pause and exhale all the worries left behind in your closet, on the counter, and in your wallet. Become a seer of God’s fingerprints on creation and in your everyday, walking around life.

Notice how the radiance of the sun turns a flat grey sea into a moving kaleidoscope of chameleon color, shifting from blue to green to turquoise and purple.

See that one pink bud bobbing on the end of a thorny stem? Notice how it arcs over brambles and centers right down the center of your walking path? Maybe those seemingly ill-placed petals bear a message instead of creating a nuisance to brush away. “Look! I made this one in your favorite shade of pink.”

What we need more than reinventing ourselves is recalibrating the heart toward God’s invitation; a release from heaviness into Light and abundance.

Rest in God and re-establish the truth about who you are. Listen and learn how he is strategically placing you in this world to make a unique difference.

Let’s transition from simply living to living simply. Because life is more beautifully captured when the heart and mind are uncluttered.

Make the details on your to-do list a big deal and miss the details of his love in the hidden places. Stop in an alcove, a side street, on a deserted stretch of pavement overlooking a valley and wonder about wandering for the love of God. What would it cost you?

What does it cost to carry on without noticing God’s presence in the details?

Stand under a leafy canopy as a cloud bursts open and remember how it feels to be loved, protected and held while you wait for the storm to pass. For God makes meaning from messes that seem meaningless.

How can we start a new school year and still savor summer’s ease and playfulness?

Practice the pause. Take the risk to rest and the aperture of your understanding widens to a big, beautiful landscape of God’s love and faithfulness. Remember what it means to be a child again. Your Father sees and He cares about what you care about.

Extravagant wastefulness with time might prove the most productive thing you choose for yourself.

Don’t want to make creating rhythms of rest a resolution you quickly break? Join the Sabbath Society community for weekly encouragement to persevere in pausing from work. Subscribe here. And download this printable August calendar to hang in a prominent place — prompts from Chapter 8 in Rhythms of Rest that will help you persevere in finding the spirit of Sabbath in your busy world.