Living next to the Big South Fork National Park was one of the rewards of working in eastern Tennessee. Whenever possible, my young son and I would explore this beautiful part of God’s creation. It seems the natural beauty made me more aware of His presence.
On one occasion I was visiting the park’s amphitheater to see if it would be appropriate for an outdoor worship service. I stopped and sat on the front row of the amphitheater, closed my eyes, stilled my thoughts and focused on Christ. I don’t know how long I sat there without moving and only praying quietly, but after some time I opened my eyes to see a beautiful tan fawn with white spots on its back only 15 feet away. I was amazed and sat motionless taking in this incredible moment. After a minute or two the fawn slowly walked off into the woods. I was in awe. I was in awe of God’s creation, but I was more in awe of God.
This moment is precious for several reasons, first how often do you get to observe a wild animal up close; especially a delicate little fawn. But the moment was precious before I opened my eyes and saw the fawn. Simply being in a quiet place and giving God my full attention made the time a treasure.
Not many of us have the privilege of living somewhere as magnificent as a national park. For perhaps most of us, the day has little to no silence or solitude. God designed us to need periods of rest and reflection in order to be whole and to hear His “still, small voice.” And of all times, this is the season we should be listening to Him and preparing to celebrate His birth.
You may say, “With all I have to do, how can I?”
There is One Who has an answer for you…but you must be still and let Him speak. Only then will we enjoy the relationship with God He intends for us to have.
This is the very reason He came to Bethlehem – to make a way that you and I could know Him in a real and personal way. What a tragedy it would be if we allowed the material blessings of the season to keep us from the very reason for the season!
Find a quiet place, even if it has to be your closet or bathroom. Choose a quiet time, even if it has to be before everyone gets up. Be still. Read the Christmas story. And just adore Him.
Let us all say along with Samuel, “Speak, Lord, for your servant is listening” (1Sam. 3:9).