Thursday, July 23, 2015

For the Beauty of the Earth

"God dwells in His creation and is everywhere indivisibly present in all His works. He is transcendent above all His works even while He is immanent within them."- A.W. Tozer

Psalm 19:1 The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the works of his hands. 

In a fast paced world of always being connected through our phones and computers, we often miss out on the daily gifts from God through His creation. We feel the need to always have the TV on or we hand our child a phone to be entertained when we are out somewhere.We feel led to sign up for this event or that, whether it's with our children or through church.  We go, go, go until we run ourselves thin and dry. We are so full of exhaustion that we can barely see through our blurry eyes the beauty He has given to us through all that He has made.

He gave us a sun that rises every morning with rays that shine through the trees. He gave us wildlife that exists everywhere whether on farms, mountains, valleys, or seas. He gave us birds who fly to many destinations, many flying around our own backyards. He gave us trees with different leaves and textures as well as having different purposes. He gave us natural remedies that can be found among the flowers that grow. He gave us seasons that serve to help things grow and animals to live accordingly. He gave us the sunsets with a variety of colors that fills the sky. And He gave us the moon and stars to light the night with a vast array of design.

Genesis 1:31 God saw all that He had made and it was very good. 

Are we looking at what God made and finding it good? When was the last time we shut everything off to look around? What are we teaching our children and future generations when a phone is always held up to our face? Why do we need to have constant internet connection instead of having quiet, unplugged moments to breathe in His existence as we admire the outdoors? Why do we feel the need to sign our children up for so many activities instead of letting them grow up learning about the world through nature?

Our days go quickly by and we desperately need to slow down. I am working on cutting back on my phone/internet usage. It's not always easy when my phone beeps with the sound of a text message or ringing tune. I try to challenge myself to keep my phone in one area and only look at it a handful of times each day.

Instead, I want to take my children outdoors to experience nature. We wake up early to go on nature walks and stop to look around at everything we see. We are identifying trees and birds that God made so that we will know what is out there beyond our big backyard. My oldest daughter will catch bugs to look at closely. My older boys will look through tree books to find out what the tree is called and learn it's purpose.

It's a work in progress but I am hoping to raise my children to live an unplugged life so they can enjoy the beauty around them. I won't give them cell phones during their childhood. I am trying to limit the amount of television time they have so they can use their imaginations. Instead of objects that have plugs, I will give them a scratch pad and pencil asking them to draw what they see outside while including a written summary. As we learn to be more nature seekers than WiFi dwellers, our eyes are opened to so many amazing things. 

It wasn't that long ago when boys and girls worked hard around their home while also running through hills and flatland barefoot. They weren't in a protective bubble of air conditioning but they were free to roam. They learned early on how to not be afraid of their environment and lived with a bravery to go out without fear of what was around them.

My children are far from those days but what I hope to instill in them is to have eyes to see what exists. God made so many wonderful things from the butterflies to the patterns of the stars. I want my children to take the time to see the world that is waiting for them. Because days go by and before long, we realize we can't get that time back.

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