Picking up a few provisions a couple days ago I noticed that my favorite type of apple, the Pink Lady, was on sale. But the Galas stole my attention with several of them having what appeared to be hand painted striations on them. Its a marvel when you stop to think that this crisply sweet fruit started with a lovely white blossom then grew into something utterly different in nature and form.

We each started as a blossom of sorts. A precious little bundle of new life that grew into something quite different than what first appeared at our moment of birth. Something is quite different though between the expectation of a grower and the expectations of a parent (grower) and that is that only one of them is supposed to be looking for standard market size, uniform shape, and even color generally speaking. More salable, you know, when the apple/we meet industry standards.

Are you of standard size, shape and color—though who really is?Has it ever been suggested that you “weren’t like the other children” because of the striations you wear? Conversely, have you been groomed to value a matchy-match sameness of a set standard of acceptableness?

I once knew a mom who insisted that her young son wear only khakis and tucked-in polo shirts. No, they weren’t members of the Royal Family, though at times she seemed to want to be. When her son grew up he rebelled through fashion and dressed totally punk much to his mother’s social shame. That there young apple went out and found himself some stripes! She thought at first that she had failed in her motherly skills in some self-centered sort of way but that gradually shifted to thinking he was a bad apple.

What if our perceived striations and stripes have come from a Master Artist’s hand? What if there is real intentionality in our unique strokes of difference? There is true beauty (and strength) staring us in the face of what seems different or irregular or not market worthy.

And I suppose it is in the eye of the beholder. Please celebrate what is unique about you. There is market value in your uniqueness.

You are a masterpiece.

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