June 9, 2021
By: Terry Abel

“Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.”  -Philippians 2:4
A young person I know said rather recently that a trip to the beach or mountains refreshes your spirit.

My recent venture to the beach made me more aware of not only the family members who went with me, but also of the seagulls, the younger ones with their gray wings, and the fully adult ones which are mainly white.  Gazing at the gulls, I thought to myself that many of us, in whatever stage of life we are in, often benefit from having wings.  Even a young child can benefit from a walk, a trip to the beach, or an outing to a bookstore.    Back in the seventies, a book called Jonathan Livingstone Seagull was popular.  One of the sayings in that book is “The seagull that flies the highest sees the farthest.”  In a sense, perhaps God has been like a seagull during this global pandemic, seeing that if all of humanity didn’t slow down in some way, our future would probably not be a good one.  I know for myself, that slowing down has made me more appreciative of nature, and sensitive to those around me.  I have definitely taken more walks than usual, and noticed too, that when my husband goes with me, his stress level, like mine, seems to drop, and both of our minds seem to open up more, reminding me of Thoreau’s saying that “Birds don’t sing in caves.”  In this technological age, they say a lot of us spend around 80% of our time inside, which is too bad, because oxygen is so important for us, and is vital to brain function. Breathing in fresh ocean air is wonderful, or as one person once said, “almost as good as drinking a really good glass of wine.”

Heavenly Father,
As we see the light at the end of the tunnel in relation to this global pandemic, help us be thankful that perhaps by slowing down, we will end up ahead, having our batteries recharged and becoming more sensitive to your creation and those around us, once our lives return to not a new normal, but a “better normal.”  Amen

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