I just got back from a nice walk around my neighborhood. The sky is a bright blue and everywhere I look there are beautiful flowers blossoming–Spring is here!
I remember about this time last year, when I got back from College in Iowa (we had about 4 feet of snow still laying around when I left), taking a walk in the neighborhood and being so amazed by the smell of Spring.
But yet we still find reason to complain. “Allergy season is terrible!” I hear. “OK, then go to Alaska!” I get allergies too, by the way, but thankfully mine are not that bad. I do complain a lot though, especially here in the Northern part of America–I can’t stand the cold. Yet if there is one thing that attracts me to the Northwest, it is Springtime; I have never seen anything like it. Bolivia has one season and an intermission–Summer, and the intermission is 50 degree weather for two weeks. If I had the money though, I would spend my year in Bolivia and then come up to Seattle for the Spring, because there is nothing quite like it.
Yet to my dismay, I was the only person enjoying the flowers this afternoon. As I walked a jogger passed me and later I saw an owner crouching down, picking up his dog’s “left-overs” from the grass. I don’t think he got a very good whiff of Spring by doing that. Most people in Seattle were busy most of the day-time, so they really had no chance to get out there on this glorious day. As a receptionist told me this morning: “I would pay to be out there today!”
Being out there, enjoying the day, made me think of how little time we take to enjoy the beauty surrounding us. Seeing the intricacy of the birds that hop along the sidewalk, the humor of the squirrels as they peek around the trees, and the delicacy of flowers blowing in the wind remind me of how great our God is. Unfortunately though, I am one of the few to notice. And it is ironic that in one of the most beautiful states in America, there are so many anti-God liberals.
When Ted Turner (the owner of TNT and CNN, for starters), an outspoken atheist, saw the first pictures of the Hubble Telescope, he went gave a speech to a large crowd. He, along with the listeners, marveled and were awe-struck by the beauty before their eyes. Mr. Turner raved about the awesomeness, and spoke at length about the colors seen there. He praised the makers of the telescope as he explained how man’s achievements had brought them to a new level of knowledge and began to describe how the Hubble would change our world.
In conclusion he said something to the effect of: “This proves, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that there is no God.”
“I’m sorry, what did you say Mr. Turner?” Should be our response. He, like the common man, is simply not looking. What did Mr. Turner intend to find, a gift-wrapped box with God inside? Maybe he would then put God into a glass bowl, seal it up, and put it on his desk for others to admire.
“See here, I have found God!” he could exclaim.
There is a mystery, an aura about God in that he wishes to be sought after, and he wishes to be found. Ted Turner, like the average man, does not need to look into outer-space to find God. Outer-space is a mere Creation of God, and everything that can be known about God in a nebula millions of light-years away can also be found in a simple flower that you can hold in the palm of your hand to touch, smell, and marvel at.Unfortunately, our culture and mindset in this country leaves no time to enjoy natural beauty. We live in an environment that makes one feel guilty if you are not a full-time worker, student, mother, etc. I am currently not full-time at anything, so I find myself explaining to people what I do with my time. And thankfully I have come to the realization that I don’t need to feel guilty about this, instead I should enjoy this time in my life to the fullest. Life is too short and too complicated to wasted it on things and profit margins and vacations. We, as human beings, were created for relationship, and investing in people has is the most rewarding thing we can do with our time. Another thing I believe we were created to do was to enjoy the small things in life and to enjoy times of peace and quiet. I have written about this before, that we must consider our life’s direction and piece together what the best thing to do with our life is.
Yet our culture holds us back from taking walks alone, and from enjoying sunsets, and from spending time talking to someone else on a personal level. We want everything fast and we want everything now. The problem is so bad that a book written in the 1990’s reported that some 85% of people do not enjoy their jobs or feel content where they are in life.
It ties in to the threads of atheism, deism, and personal independence that we tend to hold in this culture. We want to believe we are in total control of our lives–yet we fail to realize that this couldn’t be further from the truth. We have no control over our lives. Because we were created by a God who lovingly set us in this world at this specific time to be “all that we can be”. God knows everything about us, even more than we know about ourselves. If he didn’t, he would stop being God–he must know everything. We are all at different places in life, but I think we would all profit from taking time (soon!) to enjoy the created things around us. If you don’t believe in God, ask yourself why. It is likely because you have stopped looking for him, a long time ago. If you already do know God and love him for who he is, then take time and enjoy his creation and worship him. Don’t commit the crime of worshiping the created, like Ted Turner and Richard Dawkins do. Instead worship the creator of all things.
As King David said in Psalm 19:
The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims his handiwork. Day to day pours out speech, and night to night reveals knowledge. There is no speech, nor are there words, whose voice is not heard. Their voice goes out through all the earth, and their words to the end of the world. In them he has set a tent for the sun, which comes out like a bridegroom leaving his chamber, and, like a strong man, runs its course with joy. Its rising is from the end of the heavens, and its circuit to the end of them, and there is nothing hidden from its heat.
The law of the LORD is perfect, reviving the soul; the testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple; the precepts of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart; the commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes; the fear of the LORD is clean, enduring forever; the rules of the LORD are true, and righteous altogether. More to be desired are they than gold, even much fine gold; sweeter also than honey and drippings of the honeycomb. Moreover, by them is your servant warned; in keeping them there is great reward.
Who can discern his errors? Declare me innocent from hidden faults. Keep back your servant also from presumptuous sins; let them not have dominion over me! Then I shall be blameless, and innocent of great transgression. Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O LORD, my rock and my redeemer.