Although Hereford Baptist Church (HBC) is very much a city centre church, many of the congregation live in the surrounding market towns and villages. This is because Herefordshire is one of the most rural counties in the United Kingdom. Hereford is the only city and has a population of just 60,000. The Welford family lives in one of the market towns, some fifteen miles north of Hereford.
While our church family is in Hereford we are part of a home group that meets in the village of Weobley, usually every other Tuesday. For much of the year we drive across to Weobley in the dark, with the Herefordshire countryside hidden from us. Last night with the sun still shining we were blessed by the scenery, commenting how beautiful it was as we drove into Weobley. I paused after parking the car to take the picture of the village you see below.
During our home group discussions the busy-ness of life was identified as an obstruction to our relationship with God. We thought about how our lives should be a constant conversation with God, and wondered how we could focus more on Him. We realised that God has so much more for us, yet we make such little space for Him in our lives. At that point I remembered how much I had appreciated the countryside driving over to home group. The countryside has God’s signature all over it. As does each component part of every aspect of everything I see, touch, smell and hear. Just as an artist signs a painting, so God’s name is written all over creation.
It is so important that we take time each day to appreciate all that God has placed around us, including other people. How often do we pause and marvel at created things? How often do we stop and worship God because of even the smallest thing such as a flower, a smile, a drop of rain, even an insect crawling across the floor, or or just the fact that wherever we are God is there?
One more question: Are we adding to the beauty?
The heavens proclaim the glory of God.
The skies display his craftsmanship.
Day after day they continue to speak;
night after night they make him known.
They speak without a sound or word;
their voice is never heard.
Yet their message has gone throughout the earth,
and their words to all the world. (Psalm 19:1-4 NLT)