borrowed view (bŏr´rōd vyoo) n. In landscaping, the design technique of including views outside the garden to create an expansive panorama or calming vista.
The idea of a “borrowed view” has intrigued me since I first read of it in a landscaping book. In creating grand European gardens, designers often included far-reaching views of meadows, hills, and other topography. By “borrowing” features outside the garden, they enhanced the landscape to create expansive panoramas and calming vistas.
As a country girl transplanted to the city, I love looking beyond the confines of the fence around our small back yard and enjoying the open borrowed view of the sky. Sometimes it’s a beautiful sunset, other times the sweeping flights of innumerable starlings heading for their evening roost across the river. If I look another direction, I see the glittering Columbia River, Portland, and the purple hills beyond. I’m able to lift my eyes and my heart beyond the concerns and challenges of the moment and expand my perspective, bringing peace and rest to my soul.
But more than my physical borrowed view, I treasure the eternal borrowed view in my life: God’s love revealed His personal love letter, the Bible. It’s an unchanging backdrop that has shaped my life: my thinking, my choices, and my goals, my activities.
Take a few moments and join me in looking at life from that perspective—it’s a wonderful view!