Sometimes things that are beautifully made are never pressed into the use they were made for. Often, it’s for fear of them losing their beauty. As a tap dancer, I can’t tell you how many times I’ve entered into a room or stage, even those made for dance, with a beautiful wood floor, and told that I would not be allowed to dance on that floor. This is the saddest of moments for me.
The beauty of the wood floor, finished or stained, is elevated above the scuffs and marks left after a session of tap dancing. One can argue a few ways. That the beauty of the floor untouched, should be honored and cherished. That the beauty created during a session of tap dancing should be at least counted as equal value. That their is greater beauty in a wood floor that is filled with artifacts of activity. A brand new floor has the beauty of new beginnings, while a well worn floor has the beauty of experience and memories. But the gift of a new beginning is undercut if we fear the markings that come from experience.
Beauty can be shiny, but doesn’t have to be. Beautiful things include those that have been so pressed into service that their form has changed, and their shine has gone. There is something different about their beauty. It’s in the markings.