January 29, 2018

Earth Psalms: Reflections on How God Speaks Through Nature



 
"For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse." 
                                                                                                                                      Romans 1:20

This was such a beautifully written book. It consists of 52 devotionals to reflect on each week of the year. I got my copy from the library and so, I read them all within a few weeks. To be honest I couldn't stop myself from going onto the next devotional, they were so inspiring and encouraging.

This book shares the greatness of God and how He speaks through His creation.

Each devotional contains photos of creation such as, lilacs, deserts, walking paths, forests, squirrels, apple trees, glaciers, horses, sunsets and so on. They also include Scripture, which is the focus, as well as inspirational quotes and song lyrics. At the end of each devotional is a reflection, an application and a prayer. She even has a few facts about the natural element of the devotional added throughout!

I thought I'd share one of the many devotionals that I loved and found encouraging...


PURSUING PEACE

Jesus said:  

“I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid." John 14:27

"Mourning doves come to our bird feeder. They sit together in the branches of our oak, watchful of the hawk that once snatched a quail at the feeder. All we saw was a streak and then a pouf of feathers floating down. It is a bird feeder, after all. We don't discriminate. The doves aren't picky about the feed, but they're careful for their own safety. They're looking for food, not for a fight.

The first time the Bible mentions a dove is after the flood. Noah and his family were safe on the ark, watching as the rain stopped and the earth began to dry out. When Noah thought it might be safe to leave the boat, he sent out a raven, and it just kept flying. If it found a place to land, it didn't return to let Noah know where it was. Next, Noah sent out a dove. At first it was unable to find a place to land, but then it returned holding a sprig from an olive tree - an image that later became a widespread symbol for peace. After a time of judgment and destruction, now God was promising a time of peace and redemption. 

Jesus told His disciples not to be afraid, because He was leaving them with 'peace of mind and heart' (John 14:27). Anyone who has read the book of Acts knows that even after they received this gift, the disciples' lives did not go smoothly or end well, at least from a human perspective. All of them suffered for sharing the gospel, and many were even martyred. Jesus clearly didn't promise them peaceful circumstances. But He did promise them - and us - peace of mind and heart. We don't have to be troubled or afraid because of the simple fact that God is with us, and He is in control. In John 16:33 Jesus told His disciples why they could have peace. 'Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.'

Tides of trouble may come and go, floodwaters may rise, but no matter what the circumstances, the peace of God is always available. He has overcome!"

PAGE 195

"If God be our God...He will give us peace in trouble: when a storm without, he will make music within. The world can create trouble in peace, but God can create peace in trouble." Thomas Watson


'Like a River Glorious'

♪ Like a river glorious
   Is God's perfect peace,
   Over all victorious
   In its bright increase;
   Perfect, yet it floweth
   Fuller ev'ry day,
   Perfect, yet it groweth
   Deeper all the way.

♪ Stayed upon Jehovah,
   Hearts are fully blest -
   Finding as He promised
   Perfect peace and rest.


REFLECT: What comes to mind when you think of peace? How might our culture's definition be different from the biblical definition?

APPLY: When do you most struggle to rest in God's peace? This week, if you're anxious about your circumstances, take a minute to read Jesus' words in John 14:27 and 16:33 and remember the true source of peace.

CONNECT WITH GOD: Dear Lord, when I seek peace through things or circumstances, help me to remember that You are the true source. You can give peace because You have overcome all the troubles I will face in this world. Help me to trust in You and find that genuine peace of mind and heart.

"In peace I will lie down and sleep, for you alone, O LORD, will keep me safe." Psalm 4:8

I really loved this book and highly recommend it! It immersed me into the Scriptures, with its Biblically sound devotionals, as well as turned my focus onto the Lord.

God's Word will always bring peace and joy to those who love Him. And I found this book encouraged this.







Buy it HERE on Amazon

16 comments:

  1. Beautiful! This sounds like an amazing devotional! Thanks so much for sharing!

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    1. It was really beautiful! Thanks for stopping by Karrilee. : )

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  2. I love Francine Rivers and am so pleased she has written a devotional! Sounds wonderful— thanks for sharing. Stopping by from # RaRaLinkUp

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  3. I love the way God speaks through nature... even though we're often too busy to see it. I think I would love this devo. Going to see if I can find it. Thanks!

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    1. Hope you enjoy it! Glad you stopped by Karen. : )

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  4. Sounds like a wonderful devotional book!

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    1. I highly recommend it! Thanks for stopping by Bette!

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  5. I didn't know she wrote a devotional ! thanks for sharing. Most lack peace when i worry about my children. So I go to the Perfect Father and ask for peace, direction, protection and all those Fatherly things we all need.

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    1. I know exactly what you mean! I'm learning to let go and leave my children in the hands of God who loves them and can care for them so much more than I can. I feel His peace when I do that. : )

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  6. This was a beautiful devotional in both photos and words. I reviewed it as well and have bought and sent it for gifts. I enjoyed reading your review!

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    1. Thanks Joanne! Glad you enjoyed this devotional as well!

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  7. That sounds so lovely. I think I will look this book up. I like to have a devotional at the side of my bed.

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    1. This is definitely one you will love and find encouragement in your walk with the Lord! Thanks for stopping by. : )

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  8. I had no idea Francine Rivers had written a devotional! How did I miss this??! So glad you shared this at Booknificent Thursday at Mommynificent.com!
    Tina

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Feel free to leave your own thoughts in the comments. I try to respond to all of them by the end of the week. : )

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