A Noble Thing

8 Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things. 9 The things which you learned and received and heard and saw in me, these do, and the God of peace will be with you.

Philippians 4:8-9

Do you strive for noble things?  Because I grew up in the country, many could say I led a fairly sheltered life—and they would be correct.  Back then, books and the outdoors were my two greatest companions.  Rather than lurking in dark, dangerous back allies, I sauntered freely down leafy paths, sucking in clean air.  Decaying leaves and fresh earth intoxicated me with their rich odors—the only drugs I needed.   I’m not saying I was perfect; I had my faults (still do).  Thank God that we all can learn from our mistakes and receive forgiveness no matter what our life experiences.

As a Christian, I actually pray for a “sheltered” life now.  I seek the umbrella of God’s protection like I’ve never sought it before.  And not just for me but also my kids, my wife and my friends.  Praise God for His protective hand and the noble gift of creation—a gift that radiates His glory and calls us back to Him.  Although the outdoors never trumps God’s perfect Word, I will say that it measures up nicely with the Philippians 4 passage.  Here are a few reasons why I think this:

The beauty and breadth of the outdoors constantly remind me of God’s unceasing love—true, noble, just.

Trees never offer me dope, birds never curse at me, and my furry friends don’t lead me down destructive paths—pure.

It brings families together, fostering closer relationships—lovely.

I always leave the woods with wonderful stories and blessed memories—a good report.

Being outdoors teaches patience, personal responsibility and stewardship for the planet–virtue.

In nature, we learn skills and truths that can inspire us and can be passed on to the next generation—praiseworthy.

How about you?  What noble things have you discovered about the outdoors?

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15 Responses to A Noble Thing

  1. pastorjeffcma says:

    You have a gift for not only communicating your love for God and the outdoors (in that order), but for doing so in such a way that others desire to experience the same thing. Keep up the good work.

  2. I’m a Montana girl and I completely agree. I love the outdoors. Can’t wait for the weather to warm up!

  3. Grace says:

    I feel like a just read a daily devotional, very inspirational & right on. You have a beautiful gift from God to write & I look forward to your blog to see what God puts on your heart to share. Many blessings to you. Grace (d’sgal@wordpress.com)

  4. Chris Peek says:

    Beautifully written Scott. Love the imagery and how you interwove it with scripture. I’ve always wondered how anyone could spend time in or simply look at nature and not believe in God.

  5. Rachel says:

    Wonderful theme, the outdoors, so much of it teaches us about God not only in His attributes but in how He relates to us and how we relate to one another. His creation speaks of His beauty, purposefulness, creativeness, and order.

    I too constantly pray for protection – spiritual, mental, emotional and physical. I think it is an important prayer these days … and God promises to be our shelter, shield and strength if we TRUST Him. I think that is the key. We are to trust in Him, not our means.

    Rachel

  6. Melita says:

    I never though about it like that before. Thanks for sharing.

  7. EDC says:

    My latest yard project has been dismantling an old koi pond and using the river rock and pebbles to dress up our little backyard creek. My six-year old has loved it. Every day now she begs to go put on rubber boots and splash in the creek. With that it has fed her desire for Nature.

    Yesterday she asked if we could go follow the creek to wherever it came from. I knew there was a nearby farm pond that fed the creek but had never been there, so we went on a twenty minute adventure through the “wild”, “untamed” wilderness to find it. What fun we had.

    What a great insight you’ve shared! I’m inspired to spend more time in the noble outdoors with my family.

  8. Pingback: Recapping 2011 | Trails of Life

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