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Weekly message from Neighborhood Church: Exploring nature is good for the soul

Romans 1:20 For His (God’s) invisible attributes, namely, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse.

We took 3 of our grandkids out to a local nature park. The kids had so much fun looking for bugs, birds, interesting plants, and other animals. Well, until the oldest one read a sign not to feed the squirrels because they bite. His younger brother started to get a little worried and started asking a lot of questions about where squirrels would be. It was all going fine talking about how creative God is to make spiders that catch bugs and how lizards eat spiders and hawks eat lizards. You know, the circle of life. Well, all was going well until a squirrel ran across the path. The younger one quickly hid behind Kristi and looked at me and said in a calm but forceful voice, “Papa, can we go now?” We were already on our way, but he kept looking over his shoulder to make sure that the squirrel was not following him. Regardless, they loved viewing the fun things God had made: the turtles sunning on rocks, the smell of sage, the look of the beautiful flower, we even walked by some wild raspberry bushes, and of course climbing or hanging out by some logs. In talking about it afterwards, they noticed how God made everything for a purpose, that God likes to make fun and interesting things. They also noticed that each creation has unique creature-powers to catch food and live in their place in nature. You can notice a lot about God in nature!

Not only is there much to notice about God, but it does something for us to get outside and enjoy what God has made. In seeing the care God gave in creating nature means He also put much care into our creation.

Psalm 139:13-14 For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well.

In trying to encourage Job, who had faced much adversity, one of his friends pointed Job to nature.

Job 12:7-10 But ask the beasts, and they will teach you; the birds of the heavens, and they will tell you; or the bushes of the earth, and they will teach you; and the fish of the sea will declare to you. Who among all these does not know that the hand of the LORD has done this? In His hand is the life of every living thing and the breath of all mankind.

Another friend of Job does the same.

Job 37:14-16 Hear this, O Job; stop and consider the wondrous works of God. Do you know how God lays His command upon them and causes the lightning of His cloud to shine? Do you know the balancing of the clouds, the wondrous works of Him who is perfect in knowledge?

God controls and oversees the cycles and systems of creation. He certainly can oversee our lives and bring in help and care when needed.

Psalms 34:18 The LORD is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit.

Yes, nature screams out the greatness of God.

Psalm 104:24-25 O LORD, how manifold are your works! In wisdom have you made them all; the earth is full of your creatures. Here is the sea, great and wide, which teems with creatures innumerable, living things both small and great.

Psalm 8:3-4 When I look at your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place, what is man that you are mindful of him, and the son of man that you care for him?

Yet God is mindful of us humans. When helping His disciples deal with anxiety, Jesus used nature to bring comfort.

Matthew 6:28-30 And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith?

See, getting out and exploring nature is good for the soul. Why not take some time and go take a walk in the park, go to a nature center, or the beach, or take a hike in the hills, or maybe just stroll through the garden section of your local hardware store. Notice God’s handiwork and let what He has made settle your soul.

Church is a great place to find the connection with God and nature. If you don’t already have a church you regularly attend we would like to invite you to view or visit Neighborhood Church. Our website has all the information you need for times and locations of all our Sunday gatherings. We would love for you to join in. You can also find us online at neighborhoodchurch.com. As well, if you would like to view any of our past worship gatherings or videos, visit our YouTube channel, or just search Neighborhood Church Cypress or Neighborhood Church Los Alamitos on their YouTube site.

Seeking to explore God’s creation along with you,

1 Comment

  1. Informative and the poignant citations and nature was created to witness the beauty of His creation. Yet there is the younger son’s forceful voice, “Papa, can we go now?” We were already on our way, but he kept looking over his shoulder.

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