I don’t know who the guy is seated on the bench, but he must be at peace and very grateful! One of my favorite places is Pilgrim Pines on Swanzey Lake in New Hampshire. I spent four weeks on retreat there over the summer, during my Sabbatical. Pictured is a wonderful bench to sit, look out on the water, breath, pray, and just be in God’s presence – especially at the break of day.
I need those times to reflect, to be honest with myself and God, to meditate on God’s Word, his goodness and generosity! And then be changed, from the inside out. If I just wander without any attentiveness to my spiritual state I become grumpy, scattered, ungrateful and self-absorbed. Maybe I am the only one though.
Henri Nouwen says (from Making All Things New),
Indeed, living a spiritual life requires a change of heart, a conversion. Such a conversion may be marked by a sudden inner change, or it can take place through a long, quiet process of transformation.
To be converted means to experience a deep shift in how we see and think and act. It is a shift of attention in which we set our mind on divine things. The converted person sees, hears, and understands with a divine eye, a divine ear, a divine heart.
This November and December we are invited to give generously to various ministries, missions, and projects. Generosity is Good News in action – all year round! Let us give to the Banquet of Blessing, Covenant World Relief, Covenant Kids Congo, the Gideons (for Bibles), the church, benevolences, our neighbors and missions, etc. . .
Philemon 1:6 says,
I am praying that you will put into action the generosity that comes from your faith as you understand and experience all the good things we have in Christ.
John Wesley said,
Do all the good you can, by all the means you can; in all the places you can, at all the times you can; to all the people you can; as long as ever you can.
With thankfulness to God for you all, Pastor Tim