Think about a time when you made something. Remember the feeling of pleasure you had at creating something special? Did someone comment on it and appreciate your handiwork? Your music? Your story? Your art? Your garden?
Slowly over time I’ve come to realize that we see the glory of God when we take time to admire his handiwork. The heavens declare the glory of God; the sky displays his handiwork. Psalm 19:1
I’m learning that God takes pleasure in the time I spend in marveling at the works of his hands. It’s during that time he draws me closer to him. It’s an intimate time. In those moments and minutes, He renews my soul. He guides me along the paths of righteousness In those times he leads me in righteousness… Psalm 23:3. It doesn’t feel like I’m in class, reading my Bible, and being taught. Instead it seems that in those times, my heart and mind are being gently molded. Or, maybe it’s because my heart has been marveling at his tangible beauty I’m more open to his gentle nudges.
The trees of the field clap their hands… I take photos. The waves roar… I stand in awe and take photos. The photo taking is a way I express my joy for God’s handiwork.
When was the last time you took a nature walk? Often we get outside to exercise… we go for a run or a walk or a bike ride, or in the winter snap skis or baskets on our feet. It’s a good thing. Though often it really is one more item we check off from our to-do list for the day.
Have you ever gone for a ramble? Off the beaten path?
It can be alone or with another. It’s a time when there is no agenda… no set distance to cover.
It’s a time when you go outdoors, wide-eyed with expectation. Slowing down to observe the vastness and the intricacies of nature. God’s creation.
The majesty of God is magnified when we see him through the lens of creation ex nihilo (out of nothing). He commands nothingness, and it obeys and becomes something. ~ John Piper
Today or tomorrow… set aside time to check out God’s handiwork. To observe the works of his hands. To open your heart and eyes and ears… to him.
I know that I am more in awe of God, his greatness, and his power after I return from my walks. My faith is increased, my heart is filled with joy, and the things that once seemed impossible seem possible.
I remember hearing individuals say they don’t go to church, they meet with God in nature. That is not what I’m suggesting. The Bible is clear: Some people have gotten out of the habit of meeting for worship, but we must not do that. We should keep on encouraging each other, especially since you know that the day of the Lord’s coming is getting closer. Hebrews 10:25 We desperately need each other and to love each other in community.
This time spent in God’s creation does not replace our worship nor our time reading his word. Instead, what it does is enhance that time we spend in the Bible. And because we immerse ourselves in God’s Word, we are able to hear HIS still small voice as we walk in the quiet and soak in the beauties. It’s in those times “He walks with me, and He talks with me, And He tells me I am His own;” (from the hymn, In the Garden)
When was the last time you put on your walking shoes and went for a hike in the park or the woods or along the lake shore? When was the last time you allowed yourself to become childlike and stop to notice the color in the pebbles, the fresh sprouts that hint of spring, the bugs, the patterns the wind has swept in the sand, or even the sun rising or setting?
I hope you decide today to get off the beaten path, to fill your eyes and senses with HIS glories, to rejoice in the works of God’s hands, and to allow him to renew your spirit in a new and fresh way.
- If you already do this… I’d love to hear what this looks like for you.
- If you’ve not taken the time… take the time and let me know what made your heart sing.
The day we take time to look back over the past week and count ‘seven’… our joys and our sorrows… and give thanks.
There’s something wonderful that happens when we practice this counting. We start to see things in our day differently, we live with more joy and expectation. And peace.
Please join me in counting ‘seven.’
Lord, thank you for…
- a great week spent with my dear dear friend
- sunsets on Lake Michigan
- the frozen beauty on endless miles of shoreline
- butterflies inside while it’s still cold outside
- getting to see a great lady I haven’t seen in many years
- an amazing time of worship and prayer
Now, it’s YOUR turn!
Scroll down to the “Share your extraordinary thoughts” below and tap in your ‘seven.’ You’ll be glad you did.
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