Living in harmony with nature

The leaves of the trees are for the healing of the nations…Revelation 22:2

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Being in the forest and witnessing the awesome beauty of nature has inspiring and transforming effects. A recent newspaper article reports that spending time in nature has many health benefits including a release of stress and anxiety. I think many of us have felt the calming effect of taking a walk through the woods.

I certainly love my walks in the woods and I especially love autumn leaves. To me, autumn leaves are a little way God is saying “see how awesome and beautiful I am!” The beautiful skies and gentle breezes in the leaves are incredible. On my walks I always gain much needed inspiration and feel an affinity for the Creator and creation.

The earth is the Lord’s, and all its fullness, The world and those who dwell therein. Psalms 24:1

20181120_152021.jpgAll creation including the land, animals, and humans exist to show forth God’s awesomeness. Recognizing this enables us to appreciate each other and helps us find ways to live in harmony. How do we live in a way that enables every thing that has breath to praise the Lord? This was one of the questions posed by Dr. Barry Huff in his wonderful talk entitled “The Earth is the Lord’s…” (Ps 24:1): Biblical Inspiration for Sustainability.

God is love, and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God in him. I John 4:16

When we dwell in love, we naturally express appreciation and respect for those around us including people, forests, and animals. Our prayers and actions can lead us to solutions for environmental challenges. When we broaden our sense of divine Love to include love and care for every living being, we see harmony, balance, and order restored to God’s beautiful creation.

Happy Thanksgiving!

We need to find God, and he cannot be found in noise and restlessness. God is the friend of silence. See how nature – trees, flowers, grass- grows in silence; see the stars, the moon and the sun, how they move in silence… We need silence to be able to touch souls.—Mother Teresa

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Keep close to Nature’s heart… and break clear away, once in awhile, and climb a mountain or spend a week in the woods. Wash your spirit clean. —John Muir

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Nature always wears the colors of the spirit. —Ralph Waldo Emerson

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Satisfaction, nature and being in awe

Nature teaches grand lessons.

This summer I got the opportunity to sit in awe of the ocean, the beautiful sand, and tall trees. I felt like I was in heaven. Sand and water are so simple, yet their purity and consistency can entertain one for hours as you stare at the waves coming in and out, in and back out again.

I was reminded of a blog that a colleague wrote about the healing power of being in awe. Scientists have found there are healthy physical and mental effects from the state of being in awe. What gives us this profound sense of awe is as diverse as we are.  For me it’s nature, the trees, moon, animals. There is something so spiritual about pausing for a moment to just be in awe of this wonderful creation.

I was reading an article about retails shops and malls closing down at a rapid rate across America. One town is looking to make up for the lost business by attracting people to stop for the hiking trails, state parks and a new whitewater rafting outfit.

Studies have found that as people consume more, they are less and less happy. Spending money can actually be an addiction, similar to drug addictions, because, as studies show, spending can give people the same temporary high that drugs can.

So how do we break these cycles of addiction? Through knowing that man (more than just human beings) — men, women and children — are the spiritual manifestation of God. A friend once told me that she thinks of the word “man” as short for “manifestation.” I like that. We are much more than the flesh and bones that we see. We are actually each the image and likeness of God; the reflection of the one creative Spirit. Getting to know God and expressing this infinite wonderful being is the way to satisfy.

Higher enjoyments alone can satisfy the cravings of immortal man... The senses confer no real enjoyment.

What can we enjoy then? I find that thinking in terms of qualities helps. The Bible says:

God’s Spirit makes us loving, happy, peaceful, patient, kind, good, faithful…

So true enjoyment comes from our spiritual sense. Spiritual sense is actually how we perceive beauty, peace, love, satisfaction, comfort, joy. It’s how we feel safe. It’s how we give generously. It helps us make the right decisions. In fact, it is our constant connection to the Divine, to our real, native being.

God’s being is infinity, freedom, harmony, and boundless bliss.

So it makes sense that as we become conscious of God, we are becoming more aware of infinity, freedom, harmony and boundless bliss and can be truly satisfied.

Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.

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Mary Baker Eddy, Science & Health with Key to the Scriptures, p. 60:31
Galatians 5:22 CEV
Science & Health, p. 481:2-4
Matthew 5:6 NIV