Last weekend I indulged my passion for motor racing by watching the Formula One British Grand Prix, though sadly only on the TV and not live at Silverstone. For me it was even more enjoyable because Lewis Hamilton won.
My passion for Formula 1 is shared with my daughter, son and wife, although many I know fail to see the attraction, accusing me of watching cars going round in a circle followed by a mocking ‘brum, brum’.
The beauty isn’t just the racing - it’s the design of the cars, technology, engineering and the skill of the drivers.
I like modern design, and for me the cars are beautiful and artistic.
Similarly I like modern architecture, particularly buildings with large glass edifices such as the Shard in London.
I even like some modern apartment blocks and office complexes which many say blight the landscape.
I like looking at cities and towns in the evening when the lighting gives a different gloss to the cityscape - you could say I find beauty in things others consider ugly.
Some of our towns and cities have been revived and restored and have energy and life. Others, especially in the recent economic climate, have deteriorated. I see communities with boarded up buildings, graffiti ridden walls and litter strewn streets.
Our cities and towns are places to which many people are drawn. That means they occasionally reflect negative and unpleasant aspects of city and town life.
Yet look below the surface of these things and you witness great beauty. You need to look deeper than just the surface and shallow image.
Look above the boarded buildings and you see what they would’ve been like in their day, buildings of architectural beauty, with a history of lives fashioned by a particular time in history.
Look below the buildings to our streets and you’ll see the undesirable aspects of life lived on them and the problems people deal with daily.
Look deeper, especially into the face of another person and you see something more important and valuable.
Faces express joy and excitement, but look into the faces of those who have fallen on hard times and you’ll see pain, hardship and despair.
But look deeper and beyond the surface of our own shallow expectations and opinions.
You’ll see people of beauty and depth, people who need love and give love, faces that tell stories, people who matter.
There’s beauty in the face of another person even the most rugged.
God created a beautiful world with beautiful people.
We have marred it and sometimes make it an ugly place but look deeper, with meaning and purpose, and you’ll see beauty in people, places and objects that make our world a wonderful place - it’s only ugly if you don’t see what really lies beneath.