My Bible pages flicker in a momentary breeze and a cardinal whirs Bree? Bree? chur-chur-chur. Bree? Bree? chur-chur-chur, ending with a trilled tl tl tl tl tl tl. Sunlight wavers torn paper bookmark across the Psalms and chapter sixty-six starts my day with wisdom from the ancients and the Creator of the world.
"Shout with joy to God, all the earth!
Sing the glory of his name;
make known his praise glorious!
Say to God, 'How awesome are your deeds.
So great is your power that your enemies cringe before you.
All the earth bows down to you;
they sing praise to you, they sing praise to your name.'"
The cardinal sings non-stop in my neighbor's tree. Bree? Bree? Chur-chur-chur. Bree? Bree? Chur-chur-chur ... tchee-tchee-tchee-tchee.
And I feel it from bare toes curled on weathered deck planks to my relaxed shoulders in the shade, how this pausing to see and say wholeheartedly, "God, you are good! I announce it, proclaim it, stop to truly see and say it: You are good. How awesome are your deeds." -- how it floods me in quiet peace, contentment, beauty, the joy soaking in. Breathing in deep and slow; my muscles are relaxed.
"Say to you, God, how awesome are your deeds! Sing with joy to you, God, all the earth. Sing the glory of his name."
How wise of our Creator to know that in this stopping of the frenetic pace of life to see him and his artistry, to savor it, receive it, bask in it, and then proclaim it in grateful thanks -- that this way of life leads to the greatest joys and a contented peace of mind.
Scientists agree, calling it a grateful way of life, citing it here and here, but our God initiated it simply: "Say to God, How awesome are your deeds. Shout with joy to God!"
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