What Beautiful Things – (Dustin Kensrue)


It was early in the morning as I stood in front of the cash register. The lady behind the counter could hear my whole conversation…I could tell she was about to do something, like she wanted to and there was something making her think about it…I didn’t have much on me, in fact I didn’t have what I needed at all, but it didn’t take much…and it certainly didn’t take much for my heart to be completely full…it was one of those moments…

Over the last couple years I have been really working hard to change…and to create a love-filled heart for others and to do that I realized I had to change in three ways: I had to redefine, refine, and re-find myself. If I wanted to make some real changes in my life, I had to get rid everything that was causing me to struggle, and I had to find out who I really was…or better yet what God’s purpose for my life was meant to be. Hasn’t always been easy. But God really is helping me choose my steps every day. One thing God has graciously given me back is the mornings (I used to sleep most mornings…and truthfully it was for recovery)…but now with a clear head I can enjoy waking up between 6 and 6:30 a.m. I have found the true beauty of starting my days early and it is probably my favorite part of my day. Just to have a few hours in the morning before I start my day…whether I sit outside on my porch with a cup of coffee, read, put on a good record, maybe even do some work. I just look forward to every morning that God blesses me with…

A few months ago I remember I had started one of my days around this time…but I had also made a promise to a friend of mine that on this morning I would help her take her truck down to the nearest gas station to fill up one of her tires that was low on air. But I remember feeling tired that morning when my alarm went off. I was honestly feeling “flat” just like the tire…It was one of those mornings where you get up and try to go do something real fast but you still feel like you’re asleep. You know what I mean? Like where you forget your phone at home or your wallet, or you run out the door without your car keys? That was the way I felt, like I was forgetting something… but I had been wanting to help her for a long time. So we rode down together in her truck and we went inside the gas station to get some change for the air pump and I immediately realized that I didn’t have any cash to get change or anything…and she didn’t have any either…so we were having a conversation about having to go back in the truck and go back to get some money for the air pump…and then this is when it happened…this was the moment…the little things moment…as we were both going through our pockets simply looking for loose change the lady behind the counter was looking at us and could hear our conversation…and I could tell that she wanted to say something and then she said, “Hey y’all wait just a minute, hang on…” and without going into the store register she turns and finds her old purse down on the bottom row shelf behind where she stood and she just kept digging around pulling everything out and finally she pulls out two quarters…and she hands them to me with a little smile and says, “here take this…it’s all I have but should fill you up…” 

(Now I know what you’re thinking…it’s 50 cents, it’s just two quarters…but there is more to this story in the answer…)


You ever feel like you have a week or day that you just feel kind of flat? And all you really need is something or someone to help fill you back up? How do we reach that perfect pressure? Where does it really come from?


“The leaves are falling, the wolves are calling and death goes with them. The light is waning, the night will reign o’er me. But in the heart of the deepest dark, the light is shining. I lift my head from my dying bed and sing…Oh what beautiful things I see…Oh what beautiful things I see…”

Dustin Michael Kensrue is a vocalist, lyricist, and rhythm guitarist in the Orange County, California post-hardcore/experimental rock quartet Thrice, as well as a solo artist. Kensrue chose to remain a secular band with Thrice but hints at his Christianity in his writing. He says, “At the core of it, I’ve always just tried to be really honest with the way I write. The things I’m dealing with – whether it’s doubt or faith, joy or sorrow – I think that’s come through over the years and there’s been a space created where a Christian and an atheist can both really dig on the same song.” When asked about his song What Beautiful Things (quickly becoming one of my favorite songs) he had this to say:  There’s no shortage of ugliness around us… No shortage of grief, of death, of destruction and there is no shortage of ugliness in our own hearts, of greed, selfishness, hate, but neither is there a shortage of beauty… Of things which should cause us to stand in awe and wonder, laughter, music, love, a sleeping child, a ship at sea. The spinning stars, the swirl of our finger tips. If there is darkness, there is also surely light…

Ecclesiastes 3:11 | He has made everything beautiful in it’s time.

Don’t miss out on the beautiful things in this life…you really never know when it can be your last…God is truly good…ask Him for help and don’t be afraid. Don’t be afraid to ask, don’t be afraid to make mistakes and don’t be afraid to change who you are. He will make everything beautiful in your life. I can remember when I was about to hit rock bottom I would be coming down and go to bed hoping that the next day I wouldn’t remember anything from the night before..because I hated every bit of it…I never felt full…I never had a “full” life…no matter what state I was in or what someone may tell you about me I could never catch up to this joy I was chasing. It was like that feeling when you try to run in a dream and it feels like running in slow motion…everyday I was hoping for that happiness but never found it. I saw happiness and I knew what it looked like from a distance, but I was always stuck in slow motion…just a dream away I guess… I felt like that tire on my friend’s truck that morning…I always had three good wheels keeping me rollin, but I always had that one flat area of my life, that one tire that kept me from being completely full…

Here is where the story continues…I came back to the store shortly after. I could have gone on to work but I got back to my car after we dropped her truck off and I went back to my house and went staright to my change jar…I immediately drove back to the station and I go back inside to the lady at the register and I dropped four quarters into her hand and I said very sincerely “thank you very much for helping us this morning…” and I started walking away for the door and she started yelling “hey but it was only 50 cents that I gave you!” and I stop at the door and turned around and she looks at me again and said “and nobody usually ever pays me back…” I just gave her a smile and a head nod and turned to walk out the door. You see I know she gave me those two quarters with the intent that I did not have to pay her back. But her act of kindness and love had filled my heart up and I wanted to fill hers up…and that’s what it’s all about. Love for each other. Agape. The kind that never stops. It’s always been the little things that affect me. I have said that since my first post called “Making The Right Decision.” So are you tired of feeling flat? Tired of being unhappy? All you have to do is start living for other people, just try it, it’s pretty awesome. Trust in God to help you in every decision you make, and your life and your heart will start to fill up…it will get to that perfect amount of pressure. No more slow motion. I can’t help but think that day was perfect…the timing of everything was just perfect…and in a way the tire on that truck had perfect pressure. Oh what beautiful things I’ve seen…LOVE. Nothing is impossible…

James 1:3-6

3 You know that under pressure, your faith-life is forced into the open and shows its true colors. 4 So don’t try to get out of anything prematurely. Let it do its work so you become mature and well-developed, not deficient in any way. 5 If you don’t know what you’re doing, pray to the Father. He loves to help. You’ll get his help, and won’t be condescended to when you ask for it. 6 Ask boldly, believingly, without a second thought. People who “worry their prayers” are like wind-whipped waves.

(Listen below to What Beautiful Things by Dustin Kensrue)

(Feature post photo by Ponsulak Kunsub)

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