We are in the midst of a glorious spring in Minnesota.

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During a run last week, my senses were awakened by the sweet perfume that permeated the air. I looked around to see the purples, reds, and dazzling whites of the apple and crab trees and lilac bushes.  My usual 5k run became a time of praise as I found myself beholding the handiwork of THE Creator and Master Artist, who thought and spoke everything into being. More than just an intellectual exercise, my heart was filled with the sense of God’s presence, power, and care.  I felt renewed and refreshed. I was reminded of a beautiful song, written long ago, whose words still stir me today:

“This is my Father’s world,
He shines in all that’s fair;
In the rustling grass I hear him pass;
He speaks to me everywhere.” *

Lately, I had been feeling a little overwhelmed by the pressing concerns of life, ministry, and jam- packed schedule. I voiced a prayer to God, asking Him to help me see Him above the current difficulties I encountered and re-awaken a sense of awe, wonder, and peace within my spirit.

Of course, God answered that prayer, beginning with that run. I started seeing—I mean REALLY seeing—evidences of God around me.  God’s handiwork was always there; I just had to ask God to remove the spiritual film from my being so I could see and experience Him more vividly. I’m convinced God loves it when we ask Him to help us see Him more clearly, especially when we are burdened or overwhelmed. He wants to reveal Himself to us so we will turn to Him and rest in His power.

Awe and wonder can be lacking in times when we speed through days and focus on the pressing needs and concerns of life. Like runners, our minds can become fixated on our work and schedules rather than absorbing and appreciating the things of God all around us.
Even as we press through busy and sometimes hard days, God gives us hints—both subtle and obvious— of His power and beauty. The only question remaining is whether or not we will allow those things to permeate our minds and hearts to re-awaken a sense of awe and thankfulness to God.

“This is my Father’s world.
O let me never forget
That though the wrong seems often so strong,
God is the ruler yet.
This is my Father’s world:
why should my heart be sad?
The Lord is King; let the heavens ring!
God reigns; let the earth be glad!” *

Whatever you are experiencing right now, God is present, waiting for you to ask Him to remove the spiritual impediments that make it hard to see and experience Him. What you cannot do in your own power, He can do with His.

A life given over to God in worship is one that seeks, thanks, and acclaims Him each day.

“ LORD, our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth!”
Psalm 8:1,9

God bless you!

Chris Atkins

*“This Is My Father’s World. Text: Maltbie Babcock. Public Domain