"We need to find God, and he cannot be found in noise and restlessness. God is the friend of silence. See how nature—trees, flowers, grass—grows in silence; see the stars, the moon and the sun, how they move in silence... We need silence to be able to touch souls.” —Mother Teresa
The season of spring arrives silently in the hush of the night. A breeze blows in from the south, carrying with it a softness which promises warmer days ahead. As the rosy fingers of dawn begin to spread across the sky, a lone tree-top pine blossom quietly bursts open. Stretching toward the rising sun, this tiny bud expands north to south, east to west…
My day launched into warp speed the moment my feet hit the floor. There were errands to run, appointments to keep, deadlines looming, a mountain of tax receipts to organize, and household chores…too many to count. If that wasn’t enough, I received a call from our contractor requesting my presence for installation of window blinds in a house we were preparing for a family member.
I raced over to the house in time to meet the contractor, and for the first time that day I took a moment to breathe. Just breathe. The house was empty except for a couple of folding chairs. It was a pleasant day with abundant sunshine so I grabbed one of the chairs and placed it out on the backyard patio, thinking that I could at least sit outside and get some work done on my iPhone while waiting for the blinds to be installed.
I sat down…and it felt so good! The sun was warm, and I leaned back in the chair, fully intending to close my eyes for just a moment to soak up some vitamin D before I got to work. And as I leaned back, I looked up. "Oh!" I audibly gasped at the absolute splendor displayed above me. The cerulean blue sky was streaked with clouds that looked like enormous feathers. The effect was stunning. I watched as an airplane slowly traced a long, thin contrail through this majestic expanse and I was deeply moved by this quiet demonstration of how our tiny humanity is infinitely embraced by a magnificent God. I wondered to myself how did I go through this day without seeing this spectacular sky above me? And the answer came quietly…because you didn’t look up.
Indeed, in the frantic, busy, overwhelming pace of my day I had not once looked up. And the moment I finally turned my face to the heavens, all of my worries, my concerns and my to-do lists took flight, melting into that majestic expanse above me. For the next hour I reveled in a blessed peace which refreshed my weary heart and spirit. What a wonderful respite! A smile spread slowly across my face as I realized that this marvelous peace is available at a moment’s notice. All we have to do is look up.
Look up, to see the sunrise as God’s greeting and the sunset as God’s signature on another day on this beautiful planet.
Look up, when the weight of family and work responsibilities lays heavily upon your shoulders.
Look up, when your mind is clouded with worry and anxiety.
Look up, when you are wrestled to the ground by hopelessness and depression.
Look up, when the tight grip of fear steals your breath away.
Look up, when the overwhelming stress of commitments sends your days into a never-ending spin cycle.
Scripture has a beautiful way of encouraging us to look up:
“I raise my eyes toward the mountains. Where will my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the maker of heaven and earth.” Psalm 121:1-2 (Common English Bible)
There is something truly mystical about how the beauty of God’s creation can minister to our weary and burdened hearts and spirits. When we look up and witness the glory of creation, we are momentarily transported into the very heart of Divine love, enveloped in a peace that surpasses all understanding.
Creation itself patiently awaits the lifting of our eyes to the heavens so that it may share this amazing gift with us. Look up, Beloved! There is a quiet miracle happening right now. Each spring, the tree-top blossoms of pine trees burst forth into tiny golden crosses that stretch toward the heavens. Their silent testimony proclaims the most beautiful promise ever made. The promise of the Cross…of peace, salvation and new life. Look up, Beloved, and listen carefully. Hear the whisper of the Sanctus carried on the soft wind blowing through the pines as they proclaim:
“Sanctus, Sanctus, Sanctus
Dominus Deus Sabaoth.
Pleni sunt caeli et terra gloria tua.
Hosanna in excelsis.”
Holy, holy, holy Lord, God of power and might,
heaven and earth are full of your glory.
Hosanna in the highest.
Prayer: Glorious Father, thank you for your daily reminders of your great love for us. Thank you for teaching me that the release of my cares and worries is only an upward glance and whispered prayer away. Help me to remember each day to look up and to witness the glory that is silently pronounced by your creation. In Christ’s blessed name I pray, Amen.