January 31, 2011

Inhabiting the earth


his morning I read a quote that made me think about life. It made me think about how we spend so much of our days rushing from one task to the next without taking the time to enjoy life. It made me think about how we so often focus on the things people do to annoy us rather than the wonderful things people do around us on a daily basis.

I am often reminded that I need to notice the little beauties in life—the amazing sunrises, the sweetness of a warm summer breeze, the deep azure sky pebbled with soft fluffy clouds. But then I find myself experiencing repetition fatigue as I move by rote from one daily task to the next without thinking along the way. That lack of deliberation seems to be fertile ground for pessimistic thoughts and the crop from that fertile ground is rapidly growing depression.

Quite often God steps in and reminds me of his steadfast love and faithfulness. This past weekend was one of those times.

Luigi Barzini

The Italians know that everything in their country is ... imbued with their spirit. They know that there is no need, really, to distinguish or to choose between the smile on the face of a cameriere and Donatello’s San Giorgio.... They are all works of art, the “great art of being happy” and of making other people happy, and art which embraces and inspires all others in Italy, the only art worth learning, but which can never be really mastered, the art of inhabiting the earth.

I love music. And I love God. And playing music for the glory of God is one of the most wonderful color-purple moments I have found. And this past weekend was absolutely filled with that great pleasure. I played with Remembrance in a fund raising event on Saturday and then on Sunday I played for the first time with the worship team that I will be playing with monthly. It was a great pleasure to be involved in both of these events. God’s gracious hand was pointing out to me the reminders of his steadfast love and faithfulness.

So when I read the quote from Luigi Barzini on The Italians, it reminded me that quite often the thing that gets in the way of our recognition of God’s grace is to be found in our lifestyle—or at least in mine. I need to kick back and stop being quite so concerned with the nitty gritty. I need to appreciate the beauty that by God’s gracious design presents itself. I need to adopt “the great art of being happy” and of making other people happy... the art of inhabiting the earth.


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