“God is all around us.”

The heavens proclaim the glory of God.
The skies display his craftsmanship.
Day after day they continue to speak;
night after night they make him known.

(Psalm 19:1-2, NLT)

I love to look at the sky.  It doesn’t matter where I am, I can always look up at the sky and marvel at the work and creativity of God.

When I was a little girl, I remember sitting next to the window on long car rides (and we traveled a LOT), gazing up at the sky.  I loved watching the clouds move with us as we drove along and seeing how the sun would peek in and out.  I especially loved the occasional treat of seeing the sun rays shine through the clouds in a beautiful, heavenly burst of light…almost as if the Son of God Himself could come riding out of the clouds on His white horse at any moment.  What a glorious sight indeed.

I am still just as mesmerized by the sky today, as I was over 30 years ago.  No matter the season, no matter the time of day, no matter what part of the world you are in, it truly is a wondrous vision.  It is indescribable too, because it is ever-changing and moving.  It can go from blue, to pink, to purple, to green…all in one day.  There is no predicting what it will look like, and it can change in an instant.

Maybe you have been struggling lately, wondering, “God, are you even there?”  If you are anything like me, then you sometimes need a visual…something obvious that you can behold.  Even though God will mostly likely not show His literal self to you, if you are willing to stop and take a moment to behold what He has created, He will reveal Himself to you through it.

Today is a beautiful day to give it a try.  Step outside for a moment.  Breathe in some fresh air and take a look at the sky.  Be mindful of your surroundings, and ask The Lord to speak to you in His own way and timing.  Sometimes we just need to take a moment to allow our imaginations to guide us.  Sometimes we simply need to get back to a childlike place in our hearts and minds, and allow that same sense of wonder and amazement to set in and renew our understanding of who God is as our Creator and Lord.

So whether you are gazing at the clouds, watching them move and change shape – whether you are lying in the sun, allowing its warmth to soothe and warm you – whether you are catching a glimpse of the moon and stars, wondering what else is out there – or whether you are watching a storm pass, marveling at its strength and power…allow yourself to stop thinking so much and be open to experiencing God in a new way, through His creation and the majesty of His endless, spectacular sky.

Prayer:  Heavenly Father, I am so proud and so blessed to serve a Creator who provides everything that I need.  You know my every thought, and You see my individual longing to experience You in every part of my life.  I am so thankful that, through Your word, and through the wonder of Your matchless creation, I am always reminded that You are here.  I can have faith and take comfort in knowing that I am surrounded by You, God.  Amen.

The Spirit of God was Hovering…

(Gen 1:2 ESV) “The earth was without form and void, and darkness was over the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters.”

I’ve studied Scripture enough to understand what is going on in this historical account of Creation. But, as I read it, I was struck by the parallels between then and now. The description of earth was very grim; without form, void, and darkness was everywhere. It doesn’t sound like a vacation destination I would want to visit! Yet, the writer provides hope when he reports, “And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters.” The implication is that even in the midst of such a pitiful atmosphere, God was nearby, and was poised to be involved in a wonderful transformation.

Our world seems to be in an awful state once again. A casual listen to the evening news, a glance at the newspapers, or browsing your favorite online news—all speak to the terrible state of our world. Darkness abounds. It sometimes feels that people are groping for purpose. Young people are frustrated, and sadly, the frustration is spilling into the streets bringing fear and danger. In recent months, we have seen an uptick in reports of unruly young people roaming the streets, creating uneasiness about being out and about after dark.

I recently took the step of getting credentialed to carry and conceal a weapon. It would take a heightened sense of danger for me to actually use a gun for protection. But, with more and more stories of shootings in the news, it seems one can never know when danger is lurking. Recently, a pastor was shot multiple times in the parking lot of the church where he serves. Thankfully, he survived. When I went to the Sheriff’s Office to pick up my permit, I was amazed at the high volume of credentials awaiting pickup. I’m not trying to be an alarmist. But, to deny the state of our world would be foolish.

I’m not writing to cause fear. In fact, we simply need to revisit the reality of God’s presence in the Creation process to have our faith restored. I believe that just as He was hovering over the face of the waters at Creation, He is hovering near now. The reality is that His Spirit now resides in His people! You and I are equipped to represent him to this dark world we live in. We are salt and light!

So, before you give in to fear and frustration at the condition of our world, remember that everything He did during Creation week was called “good!” And, everything He is doing now is good as well!

PRAYER: Father, thank You for being near and for being willing to infuse goodness into such a dark world! I want to do my part. Help me to faithfully perform my duty to be salt and light in this tasteless and dark world. Amen.

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