The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands”—Psalm 19:1 (NIV).
My wife, Myra, and I are regular morning walkers. We usually walk an hour by the ocean whenever we get a chance, or we walk by the Wachusett Reservoir when we are home. The peaceful water and the greenery around it is very relaxing and always facilitates a good walking experience. About a year ago, we developed a habit of stopping in the middle of our walk and closing our eyes for a few minutes just to listen and enjoy the beauty of nature around us. It is amazing how we can hear nature sounds that we were not hearing while walking. We hear new sounds of birds, soft, peaceful waves, and other nature sounds that we did not observe before.
We often think of many passages in the Bible that testify to the greatness and the magnificence of God’s creative work. All around us is evidence of God’s awesome works, but we can be so busy and preoccupied with the concerns of life that we fail to see what He has provided. The Word of God calls on us not to just see, but to take time to behold and contemplate the marvelous works of God. When we take time to see and behold His works, we will be able to appreciate what we see and say, “Thou art great, and doest wondrous things: thou art God alone”—Psalm 86:10.
When we take time to behold God’s wonderful works, we also realize He has done great things in our lives. We will see God’s imprint in nature, not only as Creator, but also as a Redeemer who is involved in every aspect of our lives. We will remember from where He has brought us individually and what He has done for our families and our church community. He has preserved us from unseen dangers and guided us at every step of our journey on earth. He has changed our mourning into joy. He has not forsaken us in our most difficult moments. “The Lord is gracious and righteous; our God is full of compassion. The Lord protects the unwary; when I was brought low, he saved me”—Psalm 116:5, 6 (NIV).
Such realization will also help us to look beyond the troubles, difficulties, and unpleasant surprises of life and see the unchanging guiding hand of our eternal God. When we see God’s guidance and active providence in our lives, we’ll be able to say, “The Lord has done great things for us, and we are filled with joy”—Psalm 126:3 (NIV). When we contemplate the marvelous works of God in the heavens and on the earth and take time to appreciate His goodness to us, we will also be filled with a spirit of gratitude.
Let us intentionally take time every day to see and behold the wonderful works of God in nature and our lives. When we purposefully close our eyes physically to the rest of the world, our minds and spiritual eyes will be opened to contemplate the beauty of the Lord and His creative and redemptive wonders. We will discover how God has blessed and guided us individually and collectively as a church. Our hearts will be filled with joy at the realization that through it all, our Creator and Redeemer kept His promise never to leave us nor forsake us.