About 4 A.M. the other morning Sky, our dog, started barking.  Sky only barks when there is something outside so I got up and found her in our front room standing on a chair with her paws on the window.  I went over to where she was and looked out and saw three large objects walking in our yard.  There was enough light from the street lights to see that they were deer.  I then saw two others for a total of five standing in our yard and one was walking toward our porch.  One deer literally had his hooves on the first step and was looking in the window at us.  I grew up in Montana and Idaho so I am used to seeing deer but this scene was special.  First of all we are in the city where there is a lot of traffic, but also because these deer seemed as curious about us as we were about them.  They were looking right at us and yet did not seem the least bit afraid.  I lifted up my hand to wave at one and it looked startled for a second.  I put my hand down thinking, “What in the world are you doing trying to wave hi to a deer, are you going to invite it in for coffee or something?”   

               I was also filled with a desire to go and grab my phone and take a picture or film it.  I think we all feel that way when we see something interesting.  It is almost like we can’t help ourselves.  I remember the 1980’s when everyone was carrying those huge video cameras on their shoulders.  People spent so much time filming their vacations that they forgot to actually enjoy their vacation.  It is even worse today because if you have a phone you have a camera.  We are obsessed with filming everything so that we can see it later.  As I began to turn to go get my phone I caught myself and thought no I just want to take this in.  I want to enjoy this right now in this moment.  I want to be in the moment.  So I just stood there with Sky, who had finally calmed down, and we watched the deer as they watched us.  At some point the deer decided that we were not doing anything interesting so they left.  The dog and I looked at each other and we both went back to bed.  I don’t know about the dog but I left with a good memory.

               Many times as Christians we like to take pictures of God or film him instead of just enjoy him.  We like to read our Bibles and study them, we like to read devotionals and commentaries so that we can figure out every detail of what God meant by that particular passage.  This is all good stuff and we should do it, we should study God’s Word deeply.  At the same time sometimes we just need to be in the moment with God and his Word.  We just need to read it.  In addition to my prep work for sermons and other things, I like to daily read five chapters of the Bible.  I just read them and drink them in.  I don’t consult commentaries I don’t read the notes in the Bible.  I just read the words and enjoy them.  I will run into things at times that make want to investigate it more, but I always stop myself and say no not now just read, you can study it later. 

               I would encourage you to try this.  Just read the Word, be in the moment with God.  Watch how he moves through Scripture to accomplish his plan of salvation for you.  You will be amazed at how relaxing and freeing it is.

                                             Pastor Fred