What Remains

Pitch black. Utter silence. The air smells fresh and feels chilly. I start to notice the sounds around me. There are some birds in the trees to my left and behind. Something is moving through the grass on my right. In the faint glow off the snow I can see the shadows.

Walking out the deer stand, and then sitting there, at the dark hours of the morning into the first light really peaks one’s senses. I instantly become aware of everything around me that I can see, hear, touch, smell and taste. And while sitting in silence, not even able to wiggle a leg, a person has a lot of time to observe surroundings using those senses and to just plain think, about anything and everything.

During one of my thinking moments, I realized that with all the noise of life, I get distracted from the simple things that are happening around me. God’s creation. His people. His callings. His purpose. I often rely on my own sight, which is not very reliable since I am distracted by things in life.

Up in the deer stand, I am aware of everything around me of everything hitting my senses. And when I take a quiet moment to focus on the Lord and His workings in my life, I become aware of everything I had not seen with the distractions around me.

“But Jesus Himself would often slip away to the wilderness and pray.” -Luke 5:16

Sometimes it is just good to get rid of all those distractions for a good amount of time, and just listen and wait on the Lord. That is really all I could do in that deer stand. I mean, I might be able to wiggle my toe in my boot without making any noise, but I couldn’t even move another muscle. So, my mind was getting all the exercise. I pent some time praying and just generally thought about many different things. It’s so good to take time to focus on the Lord. I am able to look at what He’s done in my life, what He is doing now and contemplate the future He has for me. Now, I know I don’t know what will happen in the future. But in the quiet, I am able to really notice how He is working in my life, and have insight into His plan.

My challenge to you this week is to get away from everything around you, yes even your phone or iPad. Find a silent place where you start to really become aware of your senses. Focus on the Lord and all that remains around you. Ultimately, we have nothing without Him.

“…that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you a spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of Him. I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened, so that you will know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints, and what is the surpassing greatness of His power toward us who believe. These are in accordance with the working of the strength of His might which He brought about in Christ, when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places…” -Ephesians 1:17-20

What remains when you pull away from everything? Do you feel complete? Are you missing something? Are you anxious? Don’t be. The Lord is perfect and He will restore your soul. Just ask Him. And consult His Word. As we do this often, we will begin to see and understand what is happening around us. We will view life and the world through the Lord’s eyes, having a Biblical worldview. And soon we will understand what really remains when there is nothing distracting us from who we really are.

 “The law of the Lord is perfect, restoring the soul; The testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple. The precepts of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart; The commandment of the Lord is pure, enlightening the eyes. The fear of the Lord is clean, enduring forever; The judgments of the Lord are true; they are righteous altogether.” -Psalm 19:7-9

And do not be afraid of what is left when removing everything else. Seek the Lord, and He will care for you.

“More than that, I count all things to be loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them but rubbish so that I may gain Christ, and may be found in Him, not having a righteousness of my own derived from the Law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which comes from God on the basis of faith, that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death; in order that I may attain to the resurrection from the dead. -Philippians 3:8-11

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