Monday, March 21, 2016

M. Russell Ballard on appreciating the beauties of nature

Elder M. Russell Ballard (1928- ) was called as a Seventy in 1976, and has served as a member of the Quorum of Twelve Apostles since 1985.
"This is a beautiful time of year with spring beginning to burst forth in many parts of the world, bringing all of its colors, scents, and cheerful sounds. The miracle of the changing seasons, with the reawakening and rebirth in nature, inspires feelings of love and reverence within us for God's marvelous, creative handiwork....
"Men and women in all parts of the world have a desperate need to take time from their demanding routines of everyday life and to quietly observe God's miracles taking place all around them. Think of what would happen if all of us took time to look carefully at the wonders of nature that surround us and devoted ourselves to learning more about this world that God created for us! ...
"To truly reverence the Creator, we must appreciate his creations. We need to plan to take time to observe the marvels of nature. Today, we can easily become surrounded by brick buildings and asphalt surfaces that shelter us from real life around us. Plan to share with your family the miracle of buds changing to fragrant blossoms. Take time to sit on a hillside and feel the tranquility of the evening when the sun casts its last golden glow over the horizon. Take time to smell the roses.
"All the marvels of nature are glimpses of his divine power and expressions of his love."
- M. Russell Ballard, "God's Love for His Children," Ensign, May 1988, pp. 57-59
Click here to read the full talk

As we officially transition into the spring season in the northern hemisphere, this quote is a wonderful reminder of the many blessings God has given to us in this beautiful world. Elder Ballard mentions "colors, scents, and cheerful sounds"—I've recently experienced each of these three senses in the blossom of a spring daffodil, the sweet aroma of a new flower, and some particularly beautiful birdsong. These things truly can inspire "feelings of love and reverence within us for God's marvelous, creative handiwork" if we allow them to!

The challenge, Elder Ballard says, is that we need to learn to "take time" from the busy and demanding lives we lead in order to "quietly observe God's miracles taking place all around." It's so easy to walk right by, to never notice the beauty of the little things. But it's one of the most important ways we worship:

Along with the marvels and glories of creation, Elder Ballard notes in this talk that the greatest miracle of all is symbolized by these outward signs; he refers to the resurrection of the Savior, the rebirth in spring that gives meaning and power to everything else. We have so much to be grateful for.

No comments:

Post a Comment

// Customization to close archive widget on first view - DK 3/15