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May 12, 2020

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Good morning, good afternoon, good evening, and goodnight! 
Pastor Andrew here checking in again for some daily encouragement. It feels like just yesterday I sat down to write last Tuesday’s devotional – the days seem very long right now but the weeks are flying by!
Finally, the weather seems to be warming and the trees are looking more and more green as the days pass! I’ve been able to take long walks in the mornings lately, and it’s provided some time to quiet the busyness in my mind and heart and listen to creation as it wakes from the slumber of winter. My encouragement this morning is simple, and it comes in the form of a challenge.
I am asking you today to listen. Take a walk and listen. Listen for the rustling of new leaves in the wind from trees that have grown just a little taller since last year. Listen for the little critters scampering on fence tops and between branches with the new life of spring. Listen for the sounds of distant rivers and creeks bringing life and nourishment to the ground. If you listen carefully, you can even hear the scuttling of little bugs thriving from the moistness of the soil. Through the windows of our home, I can often hear the sounds of little ones riding their bikes down the sidewalks or hitting in the backyard a few houses down. Little ones in some ways unaware of the fear and panic we have all been sharing in this pandemic simply yet sincerely enjoying the sun and structure-free days. 
These are the sounds of new life as the Northern Hemisphere wakes from its winter slumber, and they are sounds we may have missed if not for being sheltered in our homes. These are the sounds of the grace of God found in the simplicity of things we are often too busy to pay any attention, and today I would ask you to take a walk and listen. Leave your phone at home, leave your watch at home, walk, and listen. 
Know that if God is revealed even in the insignificant sounds of the smallest critters and a passing creek, we can trust that He is present in our biggest greatest worries and fears. I leave you with these words from Psalm 96:
11         Let the heavens rejoice, let the earth be glad;
                        let the sea resound, and all that is in it.
12         Let the fields be jubilant, and everything in them;
                        let all the trees of the forest sing for joy.
13         Let all creation rejoice before the LORD, for he comes,
                        he comes to judge the earth.
            He will judge the world in righteousness
                        and the peoples in his faithfulness.
Creation can’t help but sing the praises of our Maker, and the Maker has invited us to listen.
Have a wonderful Tuesday and a wonderful week! Be safe and kind.
With peace,
Pastor Andrew
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