The Wonders of Nature

I woke up this morning very early…it was still dark and I don’t think many birds were even awake yet.  I pulled back the curtains just to “see” if there was anything I could see.  I grabbed my glasses off of the nightstand because I could hardly believe I was seeing what I was seeing!

The dark, black sky was filled with stars.!  I don’t think I’ve ever seen so many stars!  Now, I’ve seen stars before but the sky was FULL!!!!  Some of them were so bright and vibrant and some of them were barely a twinkle.  They were absolutely beautiful…in fact that word doesn’t do justice.  I even tried to take a picture knowing even then that the camera could not possibly catch what I was seeing.  And, it didn’t!  I stood there remembering that for everyone of those stars, God has a name and knows it.  He knows when the star began burning and when it will stop!  I was reminded again of the fact that He cares about me, and you, more than those stars.  As beautiful as they are they are nothing compared to the beauty He instills into us as we let Him have His way in our lives and as we reflect Him.

And now, just 90 minutes later the sun is shining so brightly!  It is bouncing off of the colors of the changing trees all around me and it is spectacular!  What’s even more so is knowing that the sun shining like that is only a reflection of God’s own glory and power!  The colors that He has created for us to enjoy amaze me as I look around and see just a sampling of what He has done!

Yet, what’s truly amazing is to have been able to kneel in His presence and worship Him and praise Him for all He has done.  To be able to walk with this most amazing God who loves us more than anything else in all creation!  The fact that we can have a relationship daily with Him is beyond amazing and beyond comprehension!  Why would He, the God of all creation, the God of the universe, the one and only true God spend His time on us…the part of His creation that is stubborn and at times won’t listen and wants our own way and makes futile attempts at being our own god…why would He care?

Can you imagine if the moon suddenly “decided” to never shine again?  Can you imagine if the stars “decided” to stop twinkling forever?  Can you imagine if the trees refused to lose their leaves and then bud new ones or if the flowers refused to open or if the oceans never stirred or the tides never went in or out or the sun refused to shine!  All of nature follows the plans of God and shows His glory and His orchestration as it submits to Him.  And yet, we, His most beloved, the ones who can think and reason and know and understand and grasp the smallest amount of His greatness, we, at times refuse to submit and bow and worship.

I can’t and will never be able to understand it but oh how thankful I am that He loves me in spite of me.  How thankful I am that He cares enough to allow the good times and the difficult times to come into my life so that I can come to a new depth of understanding of who He is and what He desires for me.  I fully understand that I won’t fully understand all there is to understand of Him.

All things considered, I will continue to put my trust in the hands of the One who made all things good and who loves me beyond reason and understanding.

“Dear Father God, Holy One of Israel, I worship You and praise You.  Thank-You for Your great love and mercy.  Thank-You for all things that You have created that remind me of Who You are and what You have done for me.  May my heart be ever bowed before You.”

AARRGGHH!

Okay, so, it’s confession time.  I have spent way too much time in the past 2 weeks being upset, hurt, frustrated, sad, irritated, concerned and not the kind of person who is very fun to be around….ask my husband!

Now, grant it there have been some very big issues that have arisen in life in the past couple of weeks.  Let’s face it, sometimes life is just plain hard.  But, what I was discovering was that the more I let one thing get to me, the more I saw the negative in other things.  The more I saw the negative in things the larger those issues began to loom.  I became “just a bit” overwhelmed by the struggles in the lives of loved ones.  I became disheartened with seeing things in other people’s lives that should have driven me to prayer, not to negative emotions.  I became burdened by the pain and hardship that is pervasive in this world.

And then, God did what God does best.  He sent just the “right” devotion at just the “right” time.  In this devotional, the writer asked a question about whether or not the reader was happy.  And immediately my answer was “NO, I’m not happy”…and then this “gentle voice” reminded me of joy and peace and contentment and rest and love and forgiveness and grace and mercy and the list goes on.

I am not called to be happy.  Yes, I know, many people would disagree with me.  But, in the world’s eyes happiness is so convoluted.  But, in the midst of “all” of these mountains that seemed to be in my way, God reminded me that He is bigger than the mountains.  His love is deeper than the oceans.  His faithfulness goes farther than the heavens.  And, I am called to walk with this God.  My God.  I am called to let go of every hurt, every disappointment, every upset, every frustration, every sadness, every irritation, and every concern.  My God is bigger than all of those. I am called to walk in His strength, His joy, His power, His hope…and the list goes on…

I often say, when you let go of one thing, you have to replace it with something else, or the one thing will return.  Hmmm, sounds kind of like Philippians 4:8 or Colossians 3:1-2.  If I allow my mind and my heart to remain on those issues I will continue the downward spiral that the enemy so wants for me.  But, if I replace those thoughts with the truth of God’s word, then I rise above in His power, which is what HE wants for me.  I don’t know, let’s see…do I want what God wants for me or what the enemy wants for me…shall I say “DUH”???

“Lord, for this day, please help me to keep my heart and mind secured in You and not the struggles I see.  Help me to have a constant, consistent thankful heart to see all of Your blessings no matter what they look like and no matter how they might be disguised.  Help me to remember that You really are working what’s best in my life and in the lives of those I love and in doing that You may just have to send the struggles in order to make us stronger.  Thank-You then for those struggles.  Glory to Your Name.”

photo courtesy of Microsoft Clip Art