Start the next part of your journey. Go far close to home at McDowell Tech, the 6th best community college in the USA

How can something so Ugly, be so Beautiful?

By Christy Lowman

Burke CountyChristy Lowman


A few days ago, we experienced astronomical amounts of rain. This caused the creek that wraps around the farm to overflow its banks, washing away all the fences.  In one place a 15-foot bank collapsed from all the run-off water coming down the hill. When this fell, it took down trees which pushed 3 feet of rocks and sand on top of the existing fence we had at the corner of the property.

My brother said, “It looks like Godzilla has come through here and tore everything up.”

It did truly look like a completely different place. It’s amazing what a lot of water can do. No wonder the Grand Canyon was made when God flooded the earth during Noah’s time!

My father has thirty-four cows at the farm. Now, thirty-three because one must have got swept away during the flood. These cows love to set out and explore. When the fence is gone, they enjoy getting out.

After the flood, my brother and my family spent many hours over there putting up new fences.

On the first day, when we saw all the destruction I got frustrated. Nothing had gone right all day.  I was stressed and overwhelmed. My basement had water in it back home and our ceiling had leaked, just to name a few things. I needed some good news instead of more bad news. I started feeling sorry for myself, asking, “Why does everything go wrong for me. Why can’t something ever go right?”

My husband and brother went off to observe the rest of the damage. My kids and I stayed back. While I was waiting, I decided to take pictures of the things around me. Some of the pictures I plan to use in my upcoming middle-grade novel. I also took some pictures that I thought would make beautiful cards. One of the pictures I took was of a spiny, prickly milk thistle plant. The plant itself is ugly, but it has the most beautiful purple flower when it blooms.

I started thinking about this a little deeper. When we sin, it makes us ugly inside and out. Sometimes we put up barriers to separate us from God. Just like the milk thistle has prickles on its leaves and stem so the cows won’t eat them.

It is hard for us sometimes to repent and say we are sorry to God for our sins.  Sometimes, we like what we are doing wrong so we step farther away from God, and continue to sin. Just like the cows can’t touch the milk thistle plant, sin separates us from God. He can’t reach us until we repent.

But we need God, we can’t live our life correctly without Him. Eventually, we will remember this and will want to come back to Him. When we are truly sorry and ask God for forgiveness, God forgives us wholeheartedly. He never thinks about what we did wrong again. He accepts us with arms wide open. The sin is completely wiped away. We are clean and beautiful. We want to be close to our Heavenly Father again after we ask for forgiveness.

It was at that point I realized how much we truly are like the milk thistle. When we ask God into our heart and ask Him to forgive us of our sins, He makes us beautiful just like He turns the spiny, ugly milk thistle plant into one of the most beautiful purple flowers there is. Sin makes us ugly, but God makes us beautiful.

Dear Lord, we are all sinners. Thank you for wiping away our ugly sin when we ask for forgiveness, instead of holding our sins over our head. Thank you for accepting us with arms wide open when we come back to you after we have sinned. Thank you for making us beautiful when we are sorry for our sins, just like the beautiful purple flower of the milk thistle.  Help us to realize when we sin so we can say we’re sorry. And help us forgive others when they treat us badly. In Jesus’s name I pray, AMEN.

“If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” (1 John 1:9)

“Repent therefore and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, so that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord.” (Acts 3:19)



Christy Lowman is a Christian author and illustrator that lives in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains with her husband and two children. She enjoys writing and illustrating books for all ages. Some of her short stories are published with Guideposts and HCI. Christy gives all the glory to God in everything she does. A portion of every book sold from the Small Bible Character Series will be donated to battle human trafficking. If you enjoy her books, “like’ her author page on Faceook and let her know! You can buy her books at // You can reach her at //