Today’s post is written by a guest contributor: my sister, Julie Curry. Julie and I have been enjoying the last three weeks together, spending a lot of that time out in nature. Today we are hunkered inside for Houston’s first-ever winter storm warning. It makes me happy to introduce Whoop Jenny! readers to my sister–enjoy!
Each winter I leave the cold in Iowa behind and travel to Texas. There, at my sister’s home, I relish the near-daily walks around the lake and do some bird watching. Spending time outdoors, feeling the warmth of the sun and watching the exotic birds we don’t have up north always fuels my spirit.
Another Texas bird-watching friend introduced me to a poet who finds renewal in nature and its creatures. Jim Blackburn writes about birds and what he calls Earth Church in a daily email, Virus Vigil. Whoop Jenny wrote about it here (scroll to 2nd item). His work has sparked my own desire for spiritual connection through nature.
Fortunately, my sister Jenny and brother-in-law Steve also like to spend time outdoors. Armed with binoculars and cameras, we spent a day at Brazos Bend State Park. As we walked around Elm Lake, we heard a cacophony of whistling ducks and coot. Earth Church’s choir was in full volume.
Later, I came across Psalm 23 in my daily readings. A quick vision of the day’s sensory experience flashed in my mind. Truly, we had spent the day in spiritual connection with Earth Church.
The Lord is my shepherd; I have everything I need.
To still waters he leads me.
He restores my soul.
He guides me along right paths.
For the sake of his name.
Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil, for you are with me.