God says, “Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth” Psalm 46:10.
A couple of weeks ago, I went on a camping vacation with my family. We decided to go to the United Methodist Camp, Wesley Acres, in North Dakota. The camp, which is usually filled with campers, noise, and actions, was eerily quiet - even without internet and cell service!
One afternoon, I decided to go and sit and swing in the camp hammocks. As I laid back and got comfortable, I gazed up and spotted a camel, then an angel sitting next to a mushroom, and then a bow and arrow. As you might have guessed, I was cloud watching. I was fully in this moment, listening to the gentle breezes that morphed the clouds from one image to the next.
After a while, I realized that I had not cloud-gazed in years - probably not since my kids were young. I miss this time of just being: swinging in the breeze, looking around, and allowing my imagination to run free. This was an intense God-moment for me: my soul was at peace, my mind was not preoccupied with things that needed to be done, or worries of things yet to come, and my body was relaxed.
In this very moment, God speaks to my being, inviting me to, “Be still and know that I am God.” This time I answered that invitation by listening, seeing, and feeling the moment. I am given a gift beyond measure – a rejuvenation that reaches into the very depth of my being and creates connective stillness.
Friends, we are invited by the Almighty to intentional times of rest, sabbath, and renewal. We need times to connect with our Creator, Savior and Sustainer. I am including a link of cloud formations, to encourage you to see what you are missing and to invite you to stop and look up. God has a wonderful gift of stillness and assurance for you in the clouds.
May this devotion provide you with a moment of faithful reflection and care. You are involved in ministries of justice and witness, in ministries of standing up and standing with people working to create better systems and communities, in ministries of learning and searching and researching to become more aware and awakened, more technologically savvy and proficient, more virtually and personally present in your churches and communities and world. Each of us who serve as members of your Wisconsin Cabinet write these devotions in grateful prayer for you – for sustenance and buoyancy, for strength and courage, for safety and just actions, and for faith and love to be full and fulfilled in your daily lives. God’s grace and blessings, God’s challenge and healthy discomfort, God’s Spirit and energy be with you, in the hope Christ offers us all.