A few weeks ago, as I drove home on the freeway tired and blurry-eyed, I realized that the lights and billboards and buildings all combined to create a rather Las Vegas-like effect of garishness, it was so harsh.
I don't usually notice because that's just the way it is - you know how the postcard from your friend becomes invisible once it's been on your fridge for a month - and it's not so much that it is invisible but that it's commonplace, part of the background. When the backdrop of your visual landscape is the antithesis of people and tranquility, it brings a backdrop of anxiety to your soul.
I think this is one unconscious reason why I love the ocean so much. When you sit at water's edge, your entire field of view is God's creation. His hand was the meticulous crafter- and it is very good. Except for the occasional surfer or boat, there is nothing you can see that wasn't directly created by God; nothing 6 degrees of separation from God. (God made the tree and the tree made the pulp which made the paper which makes up poster on the billboard).
Somehow, even the boats are more a part of creation than the landscape of the mainland. Maybe that's because they are transitory- there are no permanent man-made buildings to obscure the beauty and rawness of the ocean. That's why for me, a raw diet of nature to indulge my eyes and ears brings me so much closer to God. I need some every day if I can get it.
Even if you live far from the ocean or wilderness, find yourself a tree, a meadow, a creek, even a playground with some grass and soak in the beauty that God made. Of just turn your head upwards and absorb the sky, the clouds, the birds. Take your eyes off the concrete jungle, the lights, the billboards, the glare of this world and turn it to His wonderful creation. Let that turn nudge your heart to Him. Colossians 3:2.
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