Thursday, May 11, 2023

On Purpose, With Purpose

 


He says, "Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth." ~Psalm 46:10

Do you have a daily discipline that allows you to step away from the noise and confusion of this world, and simply enter into God's quieting presence?  What does that practice look like for you?  Is it in reading God's Word?  Retreating to a prayer closet?  Sitting in a favorite chair with a beloved devotional?

Quiet time with the Lord can be all those things, and more!  Often, when I'm feeling overly burdened by the world's woes, I sit on our backyard deck and absorb the wonder and mystery of God's incomparable creation, giving thanks for all the many and diverse species He has placed here on this planet we call earth.

And each one of God's creations serves a purpose and fills a niche that only it can satisfy.  Now that, in and of itself, should convince us of the omnipotence of our Father.  We can dissect an insect or flower to discover more about their unique features, but there is no way we could even dream of creating any on our own.  That's always, and ever will be, God's job.

We can, however, either unwittingly or knowingly, create a habitat where a variety of plants and animals thrive.

Take our compost piles pictured above.  It's the repository for all types of raw refuse from our kitchen and forest debris raked and collected.  These items gradually decompose, creating over time, a rich, fertile soil that can be used for planting.  And sometimes, this compost invites the presence of mushrooms when the moist environment and temperatures mix to form the perfect place for this species to thrive.

My husband, Danny, is the first one to discover their infiltration, and wastes no time taking photos of them.  Oh, the details of each one!






Just observing them reveals the delicate intricacies of God's work in all His beloved creatures.  It invites me into His presence with awe and thanksgiving.  And it reminds me that, under heaven, each and everyone of us is created on purpose and with purpose.

All we need to do is be still and seek God's presence in the day-to-day.  He is always closer than you think!

Amen!

54 comments:

  1. I've spent the last two days in our garden -- weeding, cleaning up, planting. There's nothing like it for calming one's spirit.

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    1. Amen, Glynn! Years ago when I lived where I could have a "real" garden, I found the same peace and satisfaction. I can still smell the calming fragrance of upturned earth. Nothing like it!
      Love and blessings!

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  2. Well, I don't have a deck. Our house is a ranch. I don't have a compost pile. I don't hunt mushrooms. And when I have my alone time with God it is 4:00 a.m. But finding time to be with Him is a priority for me. It is not the what, the when, or the where that matters. It is being alone with Him and being in His presence that matters. Thanks Martha for the focus you tell us is so important.

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    1. That is absolutely all that matters, Bill - being alone with God and relishing His presence no matter what the venue. That alone time should be a priority for all of us.
      Love and blessings!

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  3. I love sitting quietly with the Lord, and talking with Him every day, ridding myself from this chaotic world we live in.

    Those mushroom photos your husband took, are beautiful!

    God's Blessings to you and your husband!

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    1. Thanks so much for wishing us blessings! Sitting quietly with the Lord, no matter how or where we do so, gives us a peace and healing that cannot be replicated.
      Love and blessings!

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  4. thecontemplativecat here. I am afraid that my brain will stop doing its job. I lift this up every day. Now I just have to listen to Him and follow His words.

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    1. You are not alone, Susan. So many of us struggle with surrendering completely to the Lord, even when we know that's exactly what we should do.
      Love and blessings!

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  5. "On purpose and with purpose" ... I love that! I love sitting outside -- particularly in our winter months -- observing the pre-dawn constellations do 'their thing' and giving thanks. Beautiful photos Danny's captured!

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    1. I'll be sure to tell Danny that you loved his photos, Myra! Sitting outdoors, quieting our thoughts, and simply taking in God's wonders right in front of us can be so healing for us. And it can reconnect us to God in profound ways, more than we could imagine.
      Love and blessings!

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  6. I wish I had more quiet time. Usually it is after I have seen the Christian channel on TV. They have some good speakers. Also, when I'm on the computer having been inspired of something to write - e.g. my Christian posts.

    Thank you for a wonderful post today, Martha. God bless.

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    1. One thing I've realized, Victor, that my quiet time has to be on the top of my priority list, or it won't happen. We are both so busy with our blogs and family obligations, but setting ourselves apart to allow God's inspiration to flow through us, is never a waste of time.
      Love and blessings!

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  7. Nice post title, I like it. I enjoy sitting by the river listening to the water flow by and talking to God about what bothers me and thanking him for all the beauty that is around me. It relaxes me and lightens the load sometimes I feel I'm carrying around. Walking and taking photos also relaxes me, it gives me a wonderful view of where I am. Danny's photos of the mushrooms are nice to see. I haven't seen too many mushrooms here but I'm sure they are around. Have a good evening, Martha.

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    1. Bill, I love how you spend your time growing closer to God by being in nature and appreciating all His manifold gifts. We all have burdens we need to lay down, and what better place to do that than at the Lord's feet?
      Through your photography, too, I believe God has given you an outlet to appreciate His world much deeper than most folks can.
      Love and blessings!

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  8. Those mushrooms are so interesting in their variety! I love mushrooms but would never try to collect them on my own! Yes, I do have quiet time each morning to pray (talk with God) and read my devotional. My days that don't start that way never feel quite right. Happy Friday!! xo

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    1. I love mushrooms, too, Terri, but never would I venture to taste any that hadn't come from the grocery store. Just asking for trouble! Because of Danny's photos, I had the leisure to study the intricacies of these mushrooms that I wouldn't necessarily have observed otherwise. I'm glad to know that you've set aside intentional quiet time to spend with the Lord.
      Love and blessings!

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  9. Those mushrooms are beautiful, Martha.
    I say the rosary first thing in the morning on my balcony when everyone in the house is still asleep. It calms my mind and anxieties and starts my day right.

    Hugs and blessings

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    1. That is a wonderful routine you have, Veronica! I'm not a Catholic, but I've often wondered if reciting the rosary wouldn't be a helpful habit to adopt. After all, the whole intention of it is to focus us on our Savior and the God we worship. Thanks for your comment here!
      Love and blessings!

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  10. How wonderful to see you taking time to explore and discover the lessons God has waiting for us in nature. There's been times when I've discovered something in God's natural world and I picture Him laughing as He leans over to His Son and says, "Well, it took him long enough to see it, didn't it?" Yes Lord, it did, but at least I looked. :-) God's blessings sweet sister.

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    1. I can hear God chuckling at me, too, J. D., when I make a new discovery that has actually been there all along. His creation is replete with delightful surprises that point us right back to Him. What a blessing!
      Love and blessings!

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  11. Purpose was my word for 2022, I learned that God does things for His purpose, not ours. The thing is, we should operate with God's purpose as our goal. I love the idea of having a compost pile. The final product will enrich our earth and allow good vegetables to grow, also flowers. Happy Mother's Day. Peace and blessings to you and yours.

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    1. What a great word you chose, Cecelia! We should definitely act in tandem with God's purpose for us and for the world. Anything else is selling Him short.
      Happy Mother's Day to you, too!
      Love and blessings!

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  12. I too revel in quiet time, whether it's in my office with a scented candle (to remind of the Light of God's presence with me), or on our deck in God's living room, with trees surrounding me and the occasional visit of a bird, squirrel, or deer (and every now and then a fox too). Spending time with my Heavenly Father first thing helps me start the day fresh and powered up! / 'Love the photos of mushrooms! The variety among the species is mind-boggling. According to a BBC internet article, there are more than 10,000 different kinds of mushrooms across the world! Our God's creative genius knows no bounds--that's for sure!

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    1. What an amazing statistic about the species of mushrooms, Nancy! It is hardly something I can fathom. Reveling in quiet time is the crux of my day, no matter when it happens. Always inspiring, always refreshing, always the high point of my day.
      And I must agree - God's creative genius has no bounds.
      Love and blessings!

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  13. My sacred space/prayer closet/meditation center is in my room. It's a calming environment where I open my window first thing every morning and hear the birds singing and watch squirrels scampering. I look out and see ancient trees, where the creatures play, and the birds take flight. That, and the woodland behind my house are my sacred places where "He walks with me and He talks with me, and He tells me I am His own, and the joy we share as we tarry there, none other has ever known."

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    1. Amen, Debra! You are certainly a kindred spirit when it comes to allowing ourselves to be inspired and encouraged by God's glorious creation - new each day and waiting to be discovered and appreciated. It's one of the many ways I hear His voice.
      Love and blessings!

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  14. Being outside in nature is one of my go-to ways, too, to be reminded of God's presence. I've tried being more intentional this year about taking at least a short walk outside on most days, with no phone or podcasts or music. It's been amazing.

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    1. That's so encouraging to hear, Lisa! I do believe God invites us every day to rejoice in and give thanks for His incomparable creation. With so many social platforms and news headlines lurking to destroy our day, we so need to shut it all down so we can truly listen to the voice of God.
      Love and blessings!

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  15. Bom dia, Marta
    Linda postagem, gosto de fazer o devocional no meu quarto, é um lugar calmo e tranquilo. A natureza revela as maravilhas do Criador, cada detalhe é singular, feliz dia das Mães, um forte abraço.

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    1. Isn't it wonderful to have a calm and peaceful place to sit with the Lord? I'm glad to know your room works for you, Lucialva. I do have a spare room (office) where I often do my Bible and devotional readings. It, too, is a soothing place in which to contemplate God's presence.
      Love and blessings!

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  16. Martha, this is so soul-stirring and makes me want to shout, "Hallelujah!" I enjoy sitting outdoors, too, as I reflect on all of God's love and mercy and grace among His magnificent creation. God bless.

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    1. I'm so happy to know this post stirred your spirit, Karen! As much time as Friday's Forever spends out in nature, I would have guessed that you find spiritual nourishment in God's marvelous creation. Thanks for all the videos y'all produce!
      Love and blessings!

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    2. Karen, I looked at your website and loved what I read there!

      God Bless you, Karen!

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  17. Amen. Wishing you a beautiful Happy Mother's Day Martha Jane!

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  18. Bom dia de domingo com muita paz e saúde.

    Luiz Gomes.

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  19. A bloody nice post, my first visit here and I will be back
    I have to say God is all around us 24/7

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    1. I'm so very glad you chose to come by and visit here, Jo-Anne! I look forward to seeing you in the future. And yes, God is always with us, whether we "feel" Him or not.
      Love and blessings!

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    2. I can't see how to subscribe to your website. Any suggestions?

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    3. I have no idea why that is but will try and figure it out

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  20. Happy Mother's Day to you, my friend!

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    1. Thank you, Lon! It has been a celebratory day for which I'm very grateful.
      Love and blessings!

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  21. yep, even our compost piles can teach us lessons. whoever thought all those bits and pieces of 'garbage' could yield such rich soil. all creation sings His praise. no wonder we're drawn to the great outdoors.

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    1. God's lessons are everywhere and in everything when we take the time to slow down and be observant, Linda. I so love being outdoors, as you do.
      Love and blessings!

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  22. Hi Martha, just wanted to let you know I changed my location.

    God Bless!

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    1. You let me know that earlier, Lon. I believe I have the right blog site now.
      Love and blessings!

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    2. Sorry about that, Martha, some times I forget.

      God's Blessing to you, your husband, and family!

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    3. God's blessings to you and yours, Lon! It's not like I don't forget things, because I certainly do!

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  23. He is always closer than we think. Amen to that. I sit in my chair early in the mornings (before going to work) with My Bible and notebook, sometimes I do not want to leave :)

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    1. I wouldn't want to leave either, Marja! So thankful to be retired.
      Love and blessings!

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  24. Wow! I never realized the designs of mushrooms and how varied they can be. Your post reminded me of the song, "God's Coloring Book." May He ever bless you and Danny, my friend.

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Investments

  Do not be wise in your own eyes;  fear the Lord and shun evil.  This will bring health to your body and nourishment for your bones. ~Prove...