31 Days: Learning to rest through trust

The Rhythm of Rest

A couple of nights ago I took out my earrings before going to bed. Actually I took out one earring, because I suddenly discovered that the other one was lost.

I know losing an earring is hardly an earth-shattering event, but these were (are) my favourite earrings. I’ve worn them almost every day since I bought them on a holiday in New Zealand two years ago. I love those earrings, so I was dismayed to discover that one was missing.

At the same time I realised that there was a choice to make. I could turn the house upside down looking for the missing earring, and spend a lot of energy fretting over it.

Or, I could choose another path. Much as I love them, they are only earrings after all. So I prayed that if it was possible for the lost earring to be found that the Lord would bring it to my attention so that I would see it. That’s all. And I left it in his hands, trusting him for the outcome. Whether the earring was found or not, it would be okay.

This evening as I got into my car after work I happened to look down and see the lost earring on the floor beneath the steering wheel. Thank you Lord.

Yes, a lost earring is no big deal but in it was an opportunity for me to choose rest through trust. An internal rest, a way of being in relationship with God. And if I can rest in him with the little things then I can learn to rest in him with the big things of life too.

Lost then found. This is the Good News that goes deeper every time we dare to live out who God made us to be in this world. Walking by faith. Placing our trust in him.

Bonnie Gray, Finding Spiritual Whitespace: awakening your soul to rest

Woods
This is Day 15 of The Rhythm of Rest series (Write 31 Days challenge).

On a Sunday afternoon in spring

I was journaling over lunch today, and noticing my soul’s need for rest and refreshment. So I took the long scenic way home and stopped to photograph some wild flowers by the side of the road.

Some of the flowers are so tiny I nearly stepped on them before I saw them, even though I was looking for them.

I didn’t have my usual camera with me so these were taken with the camera on my iPad. I hope they give you a moment to slow down and breathe before you start another busy week.



31 Days: Listening to nature

Bluebells

The first thing I notice is the sound of frogs, loud and persistent. Their joyful chorus resounds around the edge of the lake. The birds add their voices in harmony. Sunlight filters through the eucalyptus trees, paths wind through magnolias, rhododendrons and camellias.

I follow a fairy wren along a path up the hillside, slowly, among tall gum trees and flowering carpets of ground covers, hellebores and bluebells. I don’t want to miss the gifts along the way.

I soak in the beauty. Listen and rest.

I can still hear the frog-song up on the hill out of sight of the lake. I listen to the birds calling one another from the tree tops. A family of twelve – mum, dad and ten tiny ducklings – meander their way down towards the lake.

Everywhere there is new life.

The winter is gone, spring has come. And I am blessed.

31 Days to Listen

This is Day 6 of the series 31 Days to Listen. For more information about this challenge, and to see others are writing, visit Write 31 Days.

Finding early morning soul space

Dawn over Wetlands

I sit on the bench. In the quiet I watch the sun rise and listen to the birds singing and calling to one another. There are few people around at that hour, but the wetlands are prolific with all kinds of bird life.

What a glorious morning, and I have nowhere else to be, no need to rush. I want to sit and soak it all in, to breathe and be present in this moment.

But there is also a little voice urging me to get up, get moving, and do something more productive.

I’m restless.

It’s not easy to stop, to be still, to be present, to listen.

I know this is an invitation to be with the Lord, to sit with him, watch with him. Not worrying about a prayer list, not worrying about whether he will speak to me. But just to be. To open my eyes, my ears and my heart to the beauty around me, allow it to inspire wonder and worship.

But it’s still a struggle to stay on that bench, not to get up and walk away.

On Purple Pond

A week later and I am back at the wetlands, sitting on the same bench. Another early morning. The fairy wrens are playing chasy, looping in circles, skimming low over the ground, alighting on reed stems before hopping from one to the next. Light glitters on the rippling water. The sun is a glowing orb rising from behind the hill.

Glorious.

And this time – this time is different. This time I’m not restless. This time, my soul is still, and I am grateful for the beauty of this morning, for this gift of whitespace, this gift of companionship, for this moment of intimacy.

In this moment I am content, grateful for this life.

I have stilled and quieted my soul. And I breathe life again.

But I have calmed and quieted myself, I am like a weaned child with its mother; like a weaned child I am content. ~ Psalm 131:2