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Sunday, September 13, 2009

Simple pleasures. God's Treasures


But be glad and rejoice for ever in that which I create.
Isaiah 65:18 RSV

Good Morning. Connie, here.

Please,
. . Come, walk with me.
. . . . Come, talk with me
.


I realize I have but an instant to capture your attention this morning. If my first few words don’t reel you in, you‘ll tune me out.

Have you tuned God out?

We live in ‘instant’ times. Times with conveniences that were but dreams even one generation ago.

We’re blessed with running water--no trips to the well for us. We can heat and cool our homes with the flick of a switch. We’re able to get in touch with our loved ones at any hour of any day, no matter where we or they are in the world. We have instant access to news, scores, grades, weather, answers. There’s instant coffee and fast foods. We can watch our favorite programs at any time now. No need to gather as a family in front of the TV at a certain hour. And (yea!) we’re able to fast forward through the commercials. We have instant opinions. It’s not even necessary to take the time to form our own any longer. And instant fame. Put a photo or video on the internet and anyone can amass a following.

And none of these is a bad thing. (Especially fast forwarding through ads.)

But what have we done with all the time we’ve ‘saved’?

Doesn’t it seem as if we have even less time than we used to? We work so hard filling every minute to the brim that we still have no spare time. When we fill our discretionary time with busyness and persistent activity, are we not, in effect, saying that we need to be in charge? That everything depends on 'me’ and my efforts?

Perhaps it’s time to let go and let God. To rejoice in the beautiful world He created for us.
His answer to the question, “Who are you?” is “I AM.” How beautiful. How comforting. Whatever follows after that, whatever you need, He is.

God not only created the Sabbath, He defined how He expects us to live it. He rested. He wants us to take a break, to relax and reflect on all He’s done for us and all that He is. His prescription for our sanity? Perhaps it’s the three R’s--rest, reflect, and rejoice. And then call on Him in the morning.

When was the last time you gave yourself permission to really enjoy some of life’s simple pleasures? To be ‘nonproductive?’ To smell a rose?

Last time you drove, did you use the occasion to catch up on phone calls? Text that really important message that couldn’t wait? Gobble up a meal you otherwise wouldn’t have had time for? Or did you play Gina’s ‘yellow car’ game with your family? Did you enjoy the scenery around you? Were you too busy concentrating on the mountains in your life you want to conquer to notice the beautiful ones in the distance?

What are some of life’s simple pleasures? What is it that gives you a warm, fuzzy feeling inside? What are some of your favorite things?

To Oscar Hammerstein, that feeling came from
“raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens.
Bright copper kettles and warm, woolen mittens.”

(I’ll bet you sang those lyrics as you read them.)

Does the aroma of homemade bread fresh from the oven



take you back to a simpler time when the world was slower and you were more in touch with your family and your own feelings? What about the crackling fire in a fireplace? Does it chase away the damp chill of a rainy night? Does it make you feel safe? Loved?

When was the last time you sat outside and did nothing but watch the sun set?

You may have something else to do this evening, but you don’t have anything better to do than to relax and just enjoy God’s creation. He created it for you.

A favor. Before you go to bed tonight, I’d like you to go stand in front of a mirror and check out His most perfect creation. The one he molded in His image. The one He loved enough to sacrifice His only Son. The one of whom, after viewing, he said, “This is good.” And then he rested.

If you’d like to win

a copy of the Bible Promise Book--One Thousand Promises from God’s Word, please leave a comment and your email address (with brackets around the [at] sign and the [dot] so no net spiders can phish it). We'll only use it to contact you if you’re our winner. A winner will be picked on the evening of September 15th. Your name will also be entered to win our grand prize in November.

Thanks for walking with me, thanks for talking with me. May you have a blessed day.

15 comments:

  1. Hi Connie,

    Everything you said is true. I think the world is moving too fast and I can't keep up with it. I do miss when I had time for the simpler things--like your visit and siting outside and just talking to my dear friend.You're the only person I know who enjoys sitting outside like me. We'll be doing it again.

    Bobbie

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  2. Thanks Connie. You really blessed me this morning. I like to sit outside and do my devotional time. My backyard is attached to "protected wetlands," which is a euphimism for a swamp. It's very lush and beautiful and full of God's creations.

    I've also just finished reading one of Beverly Lewis' Amish series. That's a great reminder of the simple life.

    Dina

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  3. You are so right Connie. Busyness prevails. I was thinking last night that I can't remember the last time I was doing just one thing. I feel guilty just watching a movie so I'll catch up on facebook and social media at that time. While homeschooling, I'm surfing blogs and commenting. While driving I'm listening to a book on CD.

    I need the reminder to slow down and BREATHE.

    Thanks, Connie.

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  4. Hey, earlybird, Bobbie, I treasure our outside times together, too. We will do it again, soon.

    Dina, when I read Bev Lewis' Amish titles, I often wonder how they do it. It sounds like a challenge. Would I ever be able to go back to a simpler life? Your backyard sounds lovely.

    Lisa, I find myself doing the same, even during football games! I think with TiVo I'm so spoiled that if I miss a play, I can rewind and see it. Maybe tonight, a sunset! (Hope it's at halftime.)
    :-))

    Thanks for visiting.

    Connie

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  5. Good morning, Connie. I totally agree. I try to take those moments, but always feel like I should be doing something else. Sometimes I wonder if we let all the busyness get in the way so we don't HAVE to take a deeper look.

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  6. A blessed Sunday morninng to you! Thanks for your post, Connie. It's a great reminder to slow down and enjoy everything that God has given us.

    Like Lisa said, I hardly ever do one thing at a time anymore. And the modern conveniences we have at our fingertips have enabled me to do so many more things than I ever could before. There are literally not enough hours in the day to get done everything I've committed myself to. For example, I signed up for an after-church Bible study that starts today, but I realized yesterday that I won't be able to stay for it. Too much to do... What was I thinking?

    I'm going to try to put aside some time today to just relax and smell some imaginary flowers. Hope you get a gander at some real ones :+}

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  7. Great inspiration today. Thanks. My mind went back to my childhood - spending summers with my grandparents out in the country. They had no running water in the house. Had to get water from the well. Grandma baked her bread. Washing cloths with old ringer washer out in the yard. Grandpa had a great garden, also he had a grinding wheel that he used to sharpen knives. Today we would probably say they had a simple life but really they had a peaceful contented life. They both talked with God during the day. Thanks, Connie, for refreshing my memory. I can smell Grandma's bread baking!
    mrstgr at msn dot com.

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  8. Suzie, you may be right. If we keep busy, we don't have to reflect on our own lives. Sad. Hope you're feeling well today.

    Jen, I hope you get some relax time today. It sounds as if there won't be too much of that in Denver and the days leading up to that are looming ever closer. Thanks for all your support.

    Theresa, so glad I could conger up some good memories for you. That's what it was all about. I remember the old ringer washer too. And the smell of bread and (making ugly face here) squash. My grandparents had a squash farm and we had to eat everything on our plate! It was years before I could make myself swallow squash again, but I love it now.

    Have a blessed relaxing day, all.

    Connie

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  9. This is absolutely beautiful. Hopped over from fb to try my hand at winning Lisa Samson's book, and found a real treat . . . but how do I get in the running for Lisa's book?

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  10. Thank you, Connie, for a timely post! Today our pastor taught much the same thing from Psalms 100.

    Paula, just leave your e-mail addy down at the September 12th posting, okay?

    See you there!

    Patti

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  11. Hi Connie and all the lovely inkies!

    I had to laugh at our days. I'm doing a zillion things this weekend. What luck! I have a moment while waiting for dinner to cook and the washer to stop . . . so I'm rushing off to do email. Yikes!

    What I like to do is walk around outside and just look at my gardens and weed. That's when my mind is freed. For me a bit of physical activity does that more than just sitting. While sitting, I'm most apt to think of what I could be doing!

    I do watch sunrises every chance I get out on the water. Hope that counts! And I love to watch Mr. heron fish from my dock.

    PAULA- did you go to Patti's blog? Scroll on down to two prior posts and comment. Remember to leave your email address!

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  12. Connie, lovely post. What a necessary reminder for me today! And what a strong ending...I've never tried that exercise before. I'll do it tonight.

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  13. Hi Connie,
    I was on the run getting ready to go to church this morning and in the middle of it I started reading your blog and then it hit me... slow down Dani...
    I kept your page open and many hours later I got the chance to finish reading it without interruptions.
    Reading other comments reminded me that I'm not the only one who is always on the run. What are we running after?
    I'm in the business of television and I like to use these words "CUT" and "NO". I should practice using these words outside the set too.

    I would love to leave a longer comment but I have to go... :)
    Dani

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  14. Hi, Paula: I slowed down this afternoon with family and my two new grand dogs. I see you got directions for posting to win Lisa's book. Thanks, gals. Paula, so nice to have you visit.

    Patti, so nice to have you with us. Thanks.

    Deb, mornings are my favorite, but sunrises--ah, they're hard to beat. But the morning with Riley at the park comes in a slight first. My weeds call to me, too. A gardener in Texas once told me, if you like it, it's a plant. If you don't, pull it. It's a weed. So now I do.

    Susan, I know God will be smiling down on you as you contemplate His perfect creation. Sleep tight.

    Dani, so wonderful to have you visit. I'll have to practice my own advice. It's so easy to write it down and not so easy to follow it. Hope you can CUT some of the busyness out of your schedule and join Dina on the dunes.

    Connie

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  15. Hi Con,
    I love your words and as you know we did relax on the sabbath and we did celebrate because the NINERS won.

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