Look up?

My friend, may I ask you a question? Is living life to its fullest more than just living? Is it as much the discovering within ourselves of an abiding spirit of contentment in what sits at our feet and rests before our noses? Does abiding, just abiding, transform the mundane into something very character building?.

Life’s a story, welcome to This Passing Day. I'm Mark Brunner.

Over 20 years ago when I first cleared the land here at Beech Springs one of my main nemesis were the stumps. There were so many of them. Cutting down the trees was enough of a labor; but digging out stumps was even worse. Even with the aid of a stump grinder the work was tedious, noisy and backbreaking. So it is that a good number of stumps still remain here in our little valley. Now, 20 years later, I see stumps somewhat differently. When once they were a reminder of work undone, now they are a convenient and comfortable place to sit and, well, just abide. My perspective has changed over time. It seems that God beckons from time to time to just sit and take in the beauty of this little valley. Where once the stumps advertised regret, they now proclaim something far different; something far more satisfying; they remind me that part of our journey here is to abide as well as to travel. In that respect, I guess stumps are good character builders.

Living life to its fullest is more than just living. I guess it's as much the discovering within ourselves of an abiding spirit of contentment in what sits at our feet and rests before our noses. Abiding, just abiding, transforms the mundane into something very character building.

Here's a thought from author Homer Hick: There is not new thing to be said of you and I. There is no new thing to be said of the mountains for that matter, or of the sea, or of the stars. The years may go their way, but the same old mountains lift their granite shoulders above the drifting clouds, the same mysterious seas beat upon the shores, and the same silent stars keep holy vigil above a tired world. But to mountains and seas and stars men forever stand in awe and wonder; and so with you and I. For we are mountains in the grandeur of our souls; we are the sea in deep under-voice of mystic loneliness; we are the stars in the steadfast purity of purpose and of service. And, we abide; forever in character and love. (H. Hick)

The Apostle Paul writes in his letter to the Colossians: "Set you hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things" (Colossians 3:2). You know it's easier said than done. Life is so busy, so full of entertaining, laboring, caring, speeding to and from. Perhaps the key is abiding; finding some place to, well, just abide for a while. Things above are eternal, without beginning or ending. Things above trump everything here below. I believe that's why it is so hard to live life always with an eye on things above. Living here in this little valley has taught me one thing though; going and coming, doing and making, building and tearing down, however important, don't provide the best platform for thinking about things eternal. For that I've found nothing better than abiding and a stump.

We pray. Heavenly Father, Thank You that You’ve carried us through the uncertainty of deep waters, through the flames of trials, and through the pain of hard losses. We are constantly aware of how much we need You, your grace, Your strength, Your power working through even the toughest days. Help us to keep our focus first on You this season. Please forgive us for giving too much time and attention to other things, for looking to other people before coming to You first. Help us to reflect again, on what Christmas is really all about. Thank You that you came to give new life, peace, hope, and joy. Thank You that your power is made perfect in our weakness. In Jesus name. Amen.

Therefore my friend, do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry for itself; each day has enough trouble of its own. (Matt 6:34) This Passing Day. May this passing day honor our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and be a blessing to you and everyone you meet. Find a stranger and say hello. Don't let another day pass without your day blessing someone else.

If you have a special prayer request, please send your request to ”This Passing Day!”

<markcbrunner@thispassingday.com> From Beech Springs, God bless you for Jesus sake.

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