Brown. The word just sits on the tongue with no oomph or passion to it. Just stops at your mouth and goes nowhere. Of course there are other words that just kind of stop too; pink and red, for example. They seem to have some kind of passion to them though. There are words that roll off the tongue so pleasingly. Purple, lavender, yellow. Those colors conjure up beauty and happiness.
Brown. Think about it. I have never heard anyone say that brown was their favorite color. I mean, come on… brown? If someone did tell me that was their favorite color, that’s exactly what I would say. “Brown”? However, as I write this, I’m sitting on a brown couch. Opposite me is a brown recliner. Our carpet is various shades of brown (not my choice, since we live in an apartment).
So, while brown would not be my choice of a favorite color, I suppose it does lend itself to the beauty that surrounds me. It can go well with many other colors.
When we lived in Oregon and visited my folks after they moved here to California and we saw the brown hills, I said I would never move to California. It was too ugly. How would I be able to see that brown all the time and enjoy it? Yuck! Yeah, that’s exactly what I thought.
Now that I’ve seen the rolling hills graced with velvet green (another word that just stops at the tongue) after the winter’s rains, I have actually come to appreciate the brown of those same hills. They have a beauty all their own, whether they be brown or green. Their gentle slopes allure and invite the eye to just… look. Gaze. Admire.
Brown. Beautiful. Full of passion. Wait, you’re thinking. You said before that brown had no passion. I know what I said. But as I have thought of the color brown, my mind has gone back thousands of years.
Noah built the ark – wood is brown. It saved his family. Because he obeyed God, God spared his family and the earth was repopulated.
Move ahead a few thousand years and see the stable and the feeding trough that held our Savior. See the sweet baby face – the face of God gazing with love at His mother, whom He would one day die for so that she can have eternal life; her sins washed away forever. See the tiny hand gripping the finger of His earthly father.
Thirty-three years later that same baby, now a full grown man, hung on a cross – made of wood – brown now stained with blood from the severe beating our Savior went through, from the nails driven into his hands and feet.
Brown. A word that no longer stops at the tongue, but lingers when I think of what Jesus went through. For me. For you. Said just right, it does ring with a certain oomph and definitely with passion. The passion of our Savior who loved us enough to spill His blood on that brown cross and give to us salvation, life free and abundant. What a gift. A precious, priceless gift.
My heart fills to overflowing gratitude and praise as tears fill my eyes. I can’t help but bow my heart in prayer, thanking God for the beauty of brown. I hope you will do the same.