The research is clear: When we spend time immersed in the beauty of nature our souls are nourished. The research is also clear that not enough people (children included) spend time in a natural setting.
I was told of a mother who had finally got her children settled on the beach on a beautiful sunny day. She had much to carry for the day at the beach, and it had obviously been a struggle because she had three relatively young children. After getting settled, she breathed a sigh of relief as she looked out over the waves breaking upon the lovely clean sand, when the oldest child exclaimed, ‘Mum, you forgot my iPad!’ That poor mother. How frequently the screen dominates our lives.
A walk through a forest, swimming in the ocean, standing on top of a mountain or watching the waves crash onto the rugged Australian coastline, all bring renewal and restoration. It causes us to reflect on beauty, on wonder and on the magnificence of creation. It gives to us perspective and a sense of awe, without which our thinking becomes too narrow. Even a walk around our garden does us good. What a delight it is to walk around the garden with young children and draw their attention to the beauty and intricacy of each plant.
The Bible speaks about the beauty of creation and the significance of a seemingly insignificant bird like the sparrow. It encourages us to trust in God and his faithfulness: the plain appearance of the sparrow reminds us of how much care He has for those of us who are made in His image.
God’s peace to you, and happy gardening!
Senior School Chaplain