I used to quote this passage to my students at the evangelical university where I taught for ten years. They always nodded in sage agreement, murmuring appreciatively—until I told them the verse wasn’t from the Bible. It’s an Islamic hadith, one of a large collection of wisdom sayings that complement and amplify the Qur’an.
I approach the Blessing of the Animals as an opportunity to share the reality that we are stewards of creation.
Little did I know that reconnecting with nature and my inner being would help me reconnect with God, too.
Our five-year-old son is notorious for running around outside barefoot and showing back up on the doorstep with a bleeding stubbed toe. It has not mattered how many times this has occurred, how many reminders we give to put on shoes, or how much it hurts him in the moment, the boy does this over and over again.
Some of my earliest memories are exploring the forty-five acre farm I grew up on. I remember my cousin showing me how to find spit bugs and thinking it was a miracle that hundreds of these little bugs were there wrapped under leaves and yet I had never seen them before.
My mom texted a picture to all seven of us kids at the end of August after Nathan, my youngest brother and twenty years my junior, left for his freshman year of college. “In the first week of empty nesting we found an empty nest!” she wrote.
Recently on a car ride, my four-year-old asked my ecologically-minded fifth grader and me the question, ‘Why do trees grow?’
The scene generally looks the same: after my older son and I pick up his brother at preschool, I have a choice to make. Do I take the shorter route, the one that winds down MacArthur and through the center of town, complete with stoplights and traffic and grit galore? Or do I take the back roads that take a few minutes longer but guarantees a glimpse of the magical view?
A new book of daily devotions – in watercolor and word – celebrates the beauty of Creation.
“How did I get here?” I thought. “More importantly, how do I get out?”