Sunday, May 7, 2017

Making America Good Again: What a Wonderful World

He made the earth by his power;  he founded the world by his wisdom and stretched out the heavens by his understanding. -- Jeremiah 51:15
They say the devil is in the details, but right now I'm feeling overwhelmed with details - details on healthcare, details on the federal budget, details on immigration, etc., etc. No one seems to be sharing the whole truth, and some folks seem to be lying outright;  I need a break before I dive back in and try to figure out what's best.

Sometimes we all need to step back and try to get a broader perspective on things. That broader perspective came to me in watching the very first Disneynature movie:  Earth.  What an amazing planet we live on!

This movie brought the lives and struggles of polar bears, whales and elephants up close.  I was amazed that these animals could go weeks and months without food.  I struggle to get from breakfast to lunch!  We humans are a wimpy bunch.  I was entertained by watching baby bears and ducks at their antics.  The mating rituals of the birds in New Guinea were hilarious. I was enthralled by the struggles of the cranes flying over the Himalayas.  Watching wolves hunt a baby caribou and lions attack an elephant was was both horrifying and humbling.  Disney brought the circle of life into my living room.

But I didn't need a movie, I only needed to walk out my front door.   I am blessed to live on the Manatee River just south of Tampa Bay.  On any given day, I see hawks, pelicans and egrets stalk their prey and come up with a fish.  I have recently felt a bit like a voyeur as I watched seagulls and mockingbirds at their mating rituals.  The ducks are now pairing up and we will see baby ducks soon.  Some days, I can see dolphins leisurely breaking through the surface as they travel up and down the river.  Manatees and sting rays have floated along our seawall.  "And I think to myself, it's a wonderful world,"  just like the song says.

Step outside today and look, really look, at nature around you.  How can you not be awed and overwhelmed by what you see?

The original version of that saying about the devil being in the details is "God is in the detail."   While the Disney movie didn't mention it at all, it is God who created all these animals, their instincts and the habitats they live in.  He crafted the details of their lives.  Surely He has a plan for human beings too.

Jesus put it this way:
Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?
 And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you—you of little faith? So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own. (Matthew 6:25-34)
Let's stop focusing on the devil in the details, which is what causes us all this worry.   Let's get to work looking for God.  

It is God's plan we should seek, not only in the details of health care, budgets, immigration but in all aspects of our lives together.  When tomorrow comes, don't worry about the problems you face, look to God for guidance.  Maybe then we'll stop tearing each other down with half-truths and outright lies and work together to discover the Truth.

There are ways to fix the challenges we face, but only if we humbly, honestly and deeply look to our Creator.  We can Make America Good Again by striving to live according to God's loving and perfect plans for us.

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