Sunday, January 15, 2012

15th January

Well it could be worse couldn’t it? My addiction, I mean. I could have turned to drink, or any number of hedonistic vices. But now as I journey through this most challenging season of life I realise that I’m hooked on woodland walks. And todays snapshot typifies why I love this quite innocuous pastime. Yes, I made one of the shorter walks in the grounds of Kedleston Hall again today. But it was rather cold as I went late afternoon, just as the sun was beginning to go down, and actually the frost has not lifted all day. Indeed the lake is beginning to freeze over which is a surprise as the water flows quite freely over the many weirs. Anyway I love it, it makes me happy. Even if I do return home rather muddy!

There’s something about being outdoors, enjoying the winter sunshine and communing with nature. Even in the grounds of a well-cared for stately home. It’s as though I can cast off all restraints, the cares and worries of life are somehow more remote when I’m out in the countryside. Basically I feel able to draw closer to God surrounded by the timeless surroundings of nature. Separation from 21st century suburbia seems to help me a lot, though I still take my phone and mp3’s with me! Anyway if nothing more the whole experience is definitely therapeutic. And part way through the walk I migrated my music away from Mexican folk/rock/flamenco as that album has been around and around a little too much since Christmas. I’m back with a brief excursion into the world of ZZ Tops again, though most days I listen to a lot of contemporary worship. And ZZ Tops, they’re the guys with the beards aren’t they? So having started to grow my hair I’m now wondering about a more serious beard. For too many years I’ve lived with the ‘smart’ haircut and something akin to designer stubble. I need to break free from my long term and quite established self-image; so what better way to make a start than by looking different… at least for a season. I worked for decades wearing a suit and the associated demands to be presentable in a conformist sort of way. Today I have no constraints, I have no employer to please and I have no woman to please so maybe I can explore being the ‘wild-man of the woods’, or even an ‘aging rock guitarist’ or whatever… Oh Lord have mercy upon this mixed up man. If it be your will, set me to task by restoring me to the workplace, and maybe lead me to a new relationship that I might dress to please another once again. Help me to live life ‘normally’ once again.

Today’s Sunday, and that meant church this morning. I’ve been wondering whether I could cope with going, given the ongoing emotional turmoil. I didn’t set my alarm and still woke early. My mum rang with an update on my dad – nothing changed – just before I was about to set off and that made me a little late. As did clearing ice off the windscreen, but I persevered and went anyway. And it was fine; I reckon the Lord is answering prayer today! No tears, just a comfortable meeting to enjoy, though I was a little sleepy… but that’s what late night blogging, after Thai curry and a movie, does for you.

Romans 1:20 ‘For ever since the world was created, people have seen the earth and sky. Through everything God made, they can clearly see his invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature. So they have no excuse for not knowing God.’ (NLT)


drawingcloser said...

Hey there brother great post. I am also a avid fan of nature. One of my all time favorite things to do is read my Bible in the woods or by the ocean. Although I rarely get the chance to do so since I live by neither. God bless

David Paine said...

Hey thanks! Maybe one day in eternity we'll meet up and enjoy 'nature' together???