Finding Peace in an Outdoor Sanctuary

Even when unexpected visitors show up, you can find peace in God's creation.

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Outdoor Patio

Our deck has been my outdoor sanctuary. It’s my favorite place to write and I love having my quiet time out there. God’s presence just seems extra close when I’m surrounded by His creation.

We live out in the country and have woods on three sides of our home so it’s private out there, and I love that I can look up from my computer and see deer nibbling at the salt block that my husband puts out in the field for them and turkey mamas with dozens of little ones scampering across the meadow. Some days it sounds like a bird choir has taken up residence, their sweet trills and whistles echoing through the woods.

It’s been delightful and so peaceful working out there—well, other than the blue-tailed lizard that fell off the roof and almost landed on my lap (I don’t like anything that slithers!), the hornet that chased me around the deck and wouldn’t give up until I could finally dash into the house, and the hummingbird that liked to swoop at my head for some reason. Those were just little blips along the way that are funny now that they’re over.

But an occurrence early yesterday evening shook up my it’s-always-so-peaceful-out-on-the-deck feelings. My husband pulled down our driveway and saw a BOBCAT running down our deck stairs.

A bobcat! Up on the deck where my grandbabies play when they come for a visit. Where I often am home alone working at a table a good distance away from the kitchen door. Yeah, the always peaceful feeling out there has now been replaced with, “Where is ‘Bob?’” Yikes!

You know, sweet friends, life often does us the same way. Things will be going well for us. Our days will be full of joy and peace, and then—BAM!—something happens that fills us with fear or it rocks our world.

Maybe it’s one of “those” phone calls from the doctor’s office, or the loss of a job, or a child who wanders away from us and God. And, suddenly, peace is nowhere to be found.

That’s why I’m so grateful for God’s sweet promises in His Word and for His peace that truly does pass all understanding. He says it best:

Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee.—Isaiah 26:3

These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.—John 16:33

Now the Lord of peace himself give you peace always by all means. The Lord [be] with you all.—2 Thessalonians 3:16

I’m so thankful for a God who gives us peace and who is with us at all times—even when “Bob” comes for an unexpected visit. 

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