Have you ever sat in silence in the woods and listened to the beautiful sounds of the leaves in the breeze, or the song of the birds? Or, maybe you love to watch the waves crash on the shore, or listen to the wind howl in a storm? Perhaps it's the sound of rain on a tin roof or a young child's giggle. What is beautiful to you?

To me, beauty is my children dancing on the beach by the sea, wind whipping their hair and sand sparkling on their legs. Beauty to me is also watching an older woman remember days past and listening to her incredible story.

As we see the world and people around us, we are often hardest on ourselves. What do you see when you look in the mirror? Can you find beauty there? What about looking in your heart? Can you find beauty there?

Anne Frankwas a young Jewish girl who, during World War II, spent many years in a tiny apartment hidden from the world. During the war, she was silent for hours at a time while hiding from the Nazis. Silence kept herself and her family safe from discovery. She had one tiny window that she dared peek out. The outside world was oblivious of her existence. She witnessed many acts of ugliness and could have become cynical and hard, but she chose not to. In her diary, now a book, she says, "I don't think of all the misery but of the beauty that still remains." Through all her grief and pain, she chose to remember the beauty still left in her difficult and short life.

We can learn a lot from Anne. There is beauty in everything and everyone. Sometimes we have to look a little deeper, but we will be better for it. When we look deeper into our own heart and see our own beauty, we will see others more clearly. When we are gentle with ourselves, we can become more compassionate toward others.

Look deep inside yourself. How are you beautiful? Maybe it's your callused hands that work hard helping others. Or, the way you always smile, trying to bring a little sunshine to others. Maybe it's the way you comfort a child when they're hurt. Or, is your beauty found in your heart that breaks every time you see someone in need?

We can find beauty in our world and teach our children to see the world in a new way.

Today as you work and live

Love your beauty

We can be so hard on ourselves. As you look in the mirror, don't look at the extra weight, the crooked nose, or the freckles you've always hated. Look deeper. Allow yourself to find beauty in yourself. Practice being kind to yourself and take compliments from others without rebuttal. Everyone has a special kind of beauty that is all their own. Find yours and enjoy it.

Collect compassion

Watch for acts of charity and kindness in unexpected ways and places. Point them out to your children. Catch your children being kind and acknowledge it.

Seek natural beauty

Look at your own neighborhood and home in a new way. Look for the positive. Take your children on a nature hike and teach them to find beauty in the world.

Teach beauty

Be beautiful by behaving beautifully with true charity and kindness. Inner beauty is truly reflected on our faces and our countenance. Set an example for your children by behaving beautifully.

Create beauty

Choose one room or one corner of your yard and create something beautiful. Your home is a sanctuary; a place of rest and peace. Teach your children the value of beauty and have them take part in choosing what you will create. We have a fountain with a bench. Children gather around the fountain and collect the pretty rocks that we secretly leave for them.

Identify beauty

Beauty comes in all forms. Identify for your children beautiful elderly people, beautiful strong disabled athletes and other unique and amazing miracles that qualify as beauty in our world.

Take a moment to note the beauty around you and the blessings you receive. No matter how hard our lives, or what circumstances in which we live, we can find and create beauty if we look hard enough. Teach your family what true beauty is and create a generation that loves easily and with compassion, creates beauty and recognizes it all around them.

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