Skip to main content

Beauty in the Common : A Collaborative Experiment to Better See the Divine Amidst the Ordinary

Friday, 4:00pm | Portal

The transcendentals: truth, goodness, and beauty. Growing up in an evangelical tradition, I had a lot of experience with the first two but little interaction with that third, elusive expression. A couple of years ago we began a collaborative experiment to help one another learn to see and savor the beauty in the common – to slow down, breathe deeply and see with new lenses all that is around us. We invited musicians to compose original songs. We invited friends to create a sort of “narrative” that corresponded with different themes following an early church structure:
Word Meal Song Prayer Time
Ultimately, our aim is not to convince, but to invite; to “taste and see” all that God is doing, stirring, and restoring around us, and to do so as a community of people who feel like religious refugees in a turbulent, disenfranchised time.

Ian Simkins

Ian originally hails from Detroit, Michigan (don’t judge) as the oldest of seven children and moved to Chicagoland in 2003 to study at Judson University in Elgin, IL. After spending a summer in India, he served as Director of Student Ministries until eventually becoming Lead Pastor in 2010. Since that time he toured the U.S with a harpist, learned to crochet, lived on the streets of Philadelphia (true story), started two organization called, “Beauty in the Common” ( and “The Common Year” (, and married Katie, the love of his life.

He is currently the pastor of Yellow Box in Naperville, IL and the proud owner of a 30 year-old yellow moped.

Session ID [190]
Close Menu