Today is the first day of spring.
Unfortunately, my family has woken up this morning to snow falling. That hardly seems fair. I mean, if this keeps up, we’re going to miss out on our free Rita’s Italian Ice 🙂
Regardless of the weather, spring is here and with it, hope is in the air. The birds will begin to sing again and the flowers will bloom. And no matter how many times we’ve seen and heard these things, the beauty and mystery of it all still captures our attention and we find ourselves in awe of our creator God. How does he do it every year? He is certainly a master at amazing us through the incredible beauty of the seasons.
Spring is that season that seems to get the best press. Summer can be too hot for some, winter can be too cold, and autumn, for many, is that season that simply delays the cold that will inevitably arrive.
But spring…spring is all about establishing hope in us again. The dreary days of winter begin to fade and the warmth of the sun in spring enables us to have a little more bounce in our step and joy in our hearts.
When you think of spring, what’s the first thing that comes to mind?
This past week I’ve been working on an activity centered around my longings as they relate to my relationship with God. As I’ve been processing and praying and listening, I’ve noticed one thing…the longings that are stirring in me these days are all satisfied as I choose to embrace being with Jesus.
This is no surprise, really. It’s actually refreshing for me, because the one word that I feel God has given to me this year is the word BE. I love how God is forever faithful and knows just how to draw me to himself in deeper ways when I need it most. This was his perfect timing at work.
Today, this was the only prayer that made sense.
I’m a morning person. I love waking up while the rest of my family are still snuggled in their beds so that I can ave some uninterrupted time reading, journaling, and talking with God while I enjoy a hot cup of coffee. My goal is to be fully present with God.
My goal doesn’t always happen. I get distracted. I remember things that I need to do or forgot to do. If I’m not as awake as if like to be, my mind wanders or I fall back to sleep. Sometimes my phone can get in the way.
So, in many ways, I’m still learning how to position myself to be fully present to God in these moments. I know that I need to make sure that distractions are at a minimum. I know that journaling helps me to remain focused. I know that choosing to implement some spiritual practices that I’ve been learning allows me to encounter God and hear His voice in new and fresh ways.
How about you? What is your morning routine like? What helps you to be fully present with God?
I must admit, I didn’t know what to expect this morning when I took my oldest son to USA Hockey’s National Try Hockey for Free Day. He was invited to attend from friends of our family and was excited to go.
From the moment we entered the building I was impressed by the hospitality by both the parents and the kids who were volunteering to partner with kids like mine to show them the ropes and encourage them to learn some of the basics.
The mission statement of York Ice Hockey includes the following statement:
We aim to develop well-rounded young men and women through high-quality hockey instruction, physical conditioning, team play, and good sportsmanship.
It’s obvious to me that those leading this program are committed to establishing and maintaining a culture that encourages confidence and team all the while showing that people matter.
I saw first-hand these types of young men and women all over the rink. I’m impressed York Ice Hockey. Keep up the great work.
My youngest daughter saw the quote below somewhere recently and immediately thought of me. She took the time to create a nice little poster for me to hang in my office. She’s so cute! I’m so glad she can understand how exhausting it is for me to be awesome at following of Jesus, being a great husband, dad, friend, and co-worker.
As a dad, my hope is that she learns how to depend on God as Father and one who doesn’t ever grow weary from being awesome. I pray that every glimpse of God throughout her life adds to her view that our God is an AWESOME GOD!
During the days when God was speaking through the prophet Isaiah, there were a number of Israelites who were feeling as if they were unimportant and overlooked by God.
God used his servant Isaiah to speak truth to them so that they would be encouraged and remember that God is the everlasting God and he doesn’t grow weak or weary. He is the one who gives power to the weak and strength to the powerless.
Are you feeling as if you’re overlooked by those around you, even God? Does it feel like God is distant and doesn’t take notice of you and your needs? He is closer than you think.
Hagar learned a valuable lesson about God’s nearness and that he is a God who sees. You can read the whole story in Genesis 16 and be encouraged today that you are indeed not overlooked, but rather, God sees you and your need and is ready to empower you to walk in his strength today.