But First, I Have an Appointment to Keep

The air, moist and still, presses against my skin like a warm cloth. I creep from the house, careful not to let the screen door smack hard against the frame. At the foot of the stairs, I shake out sand left from the previous day’s walk and shove my feet into my still-gritty tennis shoes. 

This vacation day will be filled with endless rounds of “A Peanut Sat on a Railroad Track” and Old Mother Hubbard and The Three Billy Goats Gruff. I’ll smear globs of sunscreen on wiggly little bodies and help build seashell-embellished sand castles. We’ll jump waves, stalk seagulls, and dig for mole crabs. I’ll rescue the frightened toddler from the waves and cuddle the little girl who’s too big for a nap but needs one anyway. 

But first, I have an appointment to keep. 

I reach the shore as the first rays of pink airbrush the sky. Towering clouds loom large on the horizon, navy blue edged in gold. 

An undulating line of hungry pelicans trolls the water, eager to fill their bellies with the first catch of the morning. On the horizon, a shrimp boat sits, nets extended, hoping for the same. 

With my face toward the east, I walk and watch as God the Creator paints the sky. A swoosh of magenta. A swirl of peppermint pink. Steely grey water takes on touches of blue as morning creeps forward. 

I’m too far from the waves to feel the spray, yet salty water drops trickle down my cheeks – joy leaking out. A praise offering to the God who creates such beauty. 

The spreading canvas of the sea brings much-needed perspective. 

I am small. 

He is great. 

I am weak. 

He is powerful. 

I am wind-tossed. 

He is steadfast. 

He is in control. 

I am not. 

But he is in control. 

Even the wind and the waves obey him. The sky is his canvas. The earth his palette. 

Then sings my soul, my Savior God to thee, “How great thou art. How great thou art.” 

Others meander to the shore, still and silent, coffee mugs clutched in their hands, to watch the Artist work. 

Some remain in their beach-front cottages glued to their screens, oblivious to the revelation unfolding behind them. 

Still others see but don’t understand. 

Some, like the lady in the pink pajamas, stumble out of their cottages too late to witness the vast expanse of pinks and reds and oranges. 

And others sleep the sleep of the dead while God hangs a neon sign in the sky pointing to himself and inviting all to come. 

“For since the creation of the world God's invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse" (Romans 1:20). 

I worship there, with the seagulls squabbling overhead and the sea breeze tossing my hair. My heart swells, pressing painfully against my chest when I think that the Lord of the universe, the Creator of such beauty, knows my name. 

Calls me his child. 

Loves me to death. 

As the sun bursts forth and the colors pale, I face the west and head toward home. Out of the corner of my eye I see a woman sitting cross-legged in the sand, Bible in her lap. 

Our eyes meet, and I see the twin trails of tears sliding down her cheeks – joy leaking out. Another praise offering to the God who created such beauty. 

“When he came near the place where the road goes down the Mount of Olives, the whole crowd of disciples began joyfully to praise God in loud voices for all the miracles they had seen: ‘Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord! Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!’ 

“Some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to Jesus, ‘Teacher, rebuke your disciples!’ 

“’I tell you,” he replied, ‘if they keep quiet, the stones will cry out’” (Luke 19:37-40). 

Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord. 

And paints early morning sunrises. 

And calls us his own. 

“He is the Maker of heaven and earth, the sea, and everything in them— he remains faithful forever” (Psalm 146:6). 

Now it’s your turn. Has God ever revealed himself to you through nature? Leave a comment below and share your story. If you’re reading by email, click HERE to visit Hungry for God and leave a comment.

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1 comment:

  1. Nature is THE way God speaks to me. When it's quiet, completely still, I can focus on God. I marvel at His creativity to make such diverse, beautiful things for us to enjoy. I'm convinced God's an artist and nature is proof.


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