Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Appreciating the little things

Graphic by Little Birdie Blessings
For Sunday School this week we are working on a lesson about the wise use of and appreciation of our time.  One verse I looked at was Ecclesiastes 3:1:

"To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven."

Often when a verse is familiar like this, I will do a bit of looking to see if I can find interesting or encouraging quotes from godly writers of old.  One of my very favorite devotional writers of days gone by is F.B. Meyer.  Here is what he wrote concerning this verse:

“Do not be in too great a hurry. There is time for everything that has to be done. He who gave you your life-work has given you just enough time to do it in. The length of life's candle is measured out according to the length of your required task. You must take necessary time for meditation, for sleep, for food, for the enjoyment of human love and friendship; and even then there will be time enough left for your necessary duties.

 “Do not be impatient. He who made you has prepared the successive steps along which you must travel to realize your full human development. God knows what you need and will bring you to its fulfillment, only you must wait His leisure with whom a thousand years are as one day, and one day as a thousand years. He can mature events with marvelous rapidity, and you will find that He will perfect that which concerneth you, so that no good thing will fail. He who feeds the wild things of the prairie and woodland, giving to each its appropriate portion, will not fail any one of us.

 “God puts bright and beautiful things into our lives which we need not be afraid of enjoying, it being understood that we do not snatch at them, or use them for our personal pleasure alone. Everything is beautiful after its sort and in its season, and every day has some element of goodwill in it, but we sometimes so strain our eyes towards a distant spot on the horizon that we miss the flowers on which we are treading.”  -- F.B. Meyer
As I thought about this, I realized it was so true, and that last paragraph really spoke to me.  My husband and I plan once-or-twice-a-year getaways up north, and we also try to see our family out West once a year if we can.  It would be so easy to focus only on those “distant spots on the horizon”, never noticing the simple, refreshing moments ("the flowers on which we are treading") He gives us on a daily basis.  I’m sure I occasionally do miss some of these, but I’m trying to become more aware of those simple opportunities to catch my breath and appreciate the beauty God provides every day if we will only stop and look.

Here are a few of the small things I want to remember and appreciate this week:

* The gorgeous blue lake we drove past several times.  I take a deep breath every time as if I could breathe in the essence of this beautiful place and bring it home with me.
*  A little grandson who, on seeing us approach his house, darted into the bushes and emerged with two freshly picked blackberries -- one for Grampa and one for me.
*  The sight of a small black bear ambling through the woods bordering my back yard.
*  The wonderful breeze I enjoyed while working on paperwork on the patio.
*  A green oasis of trees and bushes with a babbling brook alongside, on a local walking path.
*  The iridescent gold filigree wings of a dragonfly.

... And much, much more.

What little things can you notice and appreciate this week?

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