Monthly Musings: January

It’s a little late to be wishing you a Happy New Year, and yet this is my first post for 2016 so I’ll say it anyway. Happy New Year. I hope it’s been a good start for you, and that you’ve had opportunity to rest and relax over the summer break. I confess it feels a little odd to be reflecting when the year has only just begun and it seems that things are only just beginning to unfold and yet to fully emerge. Still, here are a few things to share from January. I hope to be posting more regularly over the coming months.

  • Christmas holidays were a wonderful time to catch up on sleep and a pile of books, but I also needed to get outside. I took a walk in one of my favourite places, the Mount Lofty Gardens, and reminded myself of the wonders of spending time in out in nature.

Mt Lofty Botanic Gardens - walking trail-wmk

Ferns-wmk

  • Thanks to a couple of handy YouTube tutorials I learnt how to crochet hearts, and spent an evening making a small pile of them. Once I got the hang of it they were quite simple and enjoyable to make.

KONICA MINOLTA DIGITAL CAMERA

  • I came across a wonderful quote on prayer from Richard Foster in his book Prayer: finding the heart’s true home. This is something I want to sit with and ponder for a while until it really sinks into my heart and not just my head.

Real prayer comes not from gritting our teeth but from falling in love.

  • One of my favourite genres of fiction is historical mystery, and this month I finally read the first book in C. J. Sansom’s Matthew Shardlake series. Dissolution is set in the context of the dissolution of Catholic monasteries in England during the reign of King Henry VIII. The history was every bit as fascinating (and frightening) as the mystery.

 

31 Days: Resting in His presence

Wetlands Path
I did something today that I haven’t done much of in a while. When I got home from work, I dumped my bags, fed the cats (it didn’t seem right to make them wait any longer), and I went for a walk.

There’s a new wetlands area being developed near my house, so I followed the paths around the ponds. I sat on a bench and as the sun dipped in the sky and the air became cooler, I sang to the Lord, I talked and I listened. I breathed in and I breathed out. I rested in his presence.

I often feel closest to the Lord when I spend time appreciating nature, so it made sense to me that finding rest in the Lord could incorporate time spent in nature.

When and how do you feel closest to the Lord? And how might he be inviting you to rest in his presence?

The Rhythm of Rest
This is Day 26 of The Rhythm of Rest series (Write 31 Days challenge).

31 Days: Nature knows how to rest

Daisies
It seems even the flowers in my garden have better sense than I do when it comes to rest. They know when to close their petals for the night, while I’m still busy trying to squeeze in one more thing.

I think nature could teach us a lot about rest, if we stopped long enough to pay attention.

The Rhythm of Rest
This is a Day 14 of The Rhythm of Rest series (Write 31 Days challenge).

31 Days: Take a moment to breathe

I’ve found that the kind of rest that refreshes me doesn’t just happen. It requires intention. It’s not just about removing unwanted stress and hurry, it’s also about embracing things that bring you joy, that are life-giving. 

One of the things that helps me to slow down, to breathe and to rest is looking at nature. Trees, flowers, mountains, animals, all kinds of natural beauty.

And if I can’t be there then a photograph is the next best thing. So I spent a little time hunting for some photographs that might also help you take that moment to breathe. Don’t rush through them, let your eyes wander around each image and take time to notice the details. Enjoy.

  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
All images sourced from the morguefile.com

The Rhythm of Rest

This is Day 6 of The Rhythm of Rest series (Write 31 Days challenge).