As many of my regular viewers will notice, I have posted very little of my own thoughts during the summer so far. Responsibilities away from the blog have taken my attention, and I have had little time to post apart from the "Quote of the Day" feature that I do quite often. This week, my schedule has allowed for more reflection, and the ideas are flowing once again…partly due to something that happened the other day.
I have mentioned in the past that I call the beautiful state of Alaska my home. I have been blessed to grow up here my whole life, and there isn't a place I love more than this. As a writer, I find that it is the perfect location to find inspiration. It is easy to hear God here. Much of my state is untouched by the commercialism and artificial lifestyle of what Alaskans call "the lower 48." When here, one feels like they are removed from the breakneck speed of city and urban life and are able to simply take in the majestic views of nature unhurried. The mountains and lakes, woods and animals, speak of a Creator Who loves us fiercely and Who allows us a small glimpse into His glory by such breathtaking scenes as these.
I do find it fascinating that I almost need to be out in this wilderness from time to time in order for my creativity to stay fresh. In my busyness, I have to make time to stop the noise. When I do not, my writing suffers. I suffer. Because I cannot listen to God as well. He gets drowned out by all of the other duties, the other cares. I cannot hear what He has to say to me…through me. The Psalmist says in Psalm 23 that God leads him beside "still waters" and "restores his soul." Soul restoration does not happen in the noise. Such frantic activity drains it of its ability to respond and commune with the God who made it. King David had a point when he said that his soul would find rest beside quiet waters…in the still places. God is forever speaking. He is forever working. But we must place ourselves in a position to hear Him. To get away from the distractions and be alone with Him.
The other day, I went hiking. I left the business behind, and I went to a quiet place…a place beside still waters. Almost immediately, I felt peace in my heart. I could look around and see all that God has made and think, "If this beauty is so prevalent on a fallen earth, what will Heaven look like when all is made new?!" God has created this natural grandeur so that human beings will have a visible reminder of how small they are and how big He is.
He uses what He has made to teach them about Himself. As I sat beside the glassy waters of Gold Cord Lake, all I could hear was the trickle of water from the nearby spring…and the quiet voice of God speaking in my heart. God is not found in the rapid pace of humanity and their constant rush to do more, be more. God is discovered…and we are discovered…in the silence. There, the pounding of the heart, the rushing of the mind, can be eased and we can be reminded of our true purpose on this earth: to glorify God and to enjoy Him forever!