MaryJanesFarm Farmgirl Connection
Join in ... sign up
 
Home | Profile | Register | Active Topics | Members | Search | FAQ
Username:
Password:
Save Password        REGISTER
Forgot your Password?

 All Forums
 General Chat Forum
 Family Matters
 Christianity and nature - thoughts?
 New Topic  Reply to Topic
 Printer Friendly
Next Page
Author Family Matters: Previous Topic Christianity and nature - thoughts? Next Topic
Page: of 2

RachelLeigh
True Blue Farmgirl

623 Posts

Rachel
Port Orchard WA
USA
623 Posts

Posted - Aug 04 2015 :  5:38:08 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
This might be a bit long and rambling and, in some places, even nonsensical, and I apologize for that, but this has been on my mind (and heart) for a while now and I’d like to spark some discussion.

I often blog about spirituality and, specifically, my struggles with various aspects of Christianity. The older I get, the more I’ve realized that none of the “accepted” denominations of Christianity fit me. I can’t say that I agree with any one particular set of beliefs 100%, and that’s a struggle because it’s hard to be engaged and become part of the community when I don’t really “buy in” to everything that a particular church teaches. I become bored and then I just check out. I’ve felt this way for years, but societal expectations have kept me firmly rooted right where I was. It’s only now, after moving 2300 miles away from everyone I know and love, that I can finally be me. There’s no one peering down their nose at me over roast and potatoes at Sunday dinner because I didn’t worship/pray/think the way the rest of the family does and expected me to do, as well. That is so liberating. So freeing.

And a profound discovery for me is that since moving to the Pacific Northwest, I don’t need a church or a chapel or a meetinghouse to worship. When I stare at Mount Rainier, either on a clear day or on a day when only the peak is visible by the clouds that cling to its face, I see the work of God. When I sit on a ferry with the sound of the Puget Sound waters breaking beneath the ship and the wind on my face, I feel the breath of God. I see God’s handiwork in the snow that clings to the Olympic Mountains in June or in the misty forests of old growth evergreen. This very earth has become my chapel. It’s just out there, whenever I step outside and take a deep breath of the salty-sweet air.

That puts me in a conundrum, because I want to explore spirituality through nature, but I truly don’t know how to start. How do I cultivate that spirituality and make it grow? Do I study earth spirituality? Do I read up on Native American religions? Do I simply go stand outside and take it all in? I still have Christian beliefs, as well, and I think the two can marry well together, but I’m not really sure how to get there…

So, fellow farmgirls, what are your thoughts on this? Do you ever feel this way?



Farmgirl Sister #5159
My blog: http://14thandoak.com

prariehawk
True Blue Farmgirl

2914 Posts

Cindy

2914 Posts

Posted - Aug 04 2015 :  6:10:05 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I know where you're coming from. I too feel closer to God in nature than in any church. I was raised Catholic and there is a small but growing number of priests,nuns,and lay people who see God primarily in the natural world.I have read a lot about Native American spirituality and it is incredible in its depth and beauty. Maybe read some works by Wendell Berry to get started. He is a farmer and poet with a spiritual bent. Just be careful of people who advertise themselves as "shamans" and the like. Real shamans rely on word of mouth not magazine ads.There is a quarterly journal called "Plough" that you may enjoy. Maybe you can go on a retreat at a center that embraces Earth spirituality. Love creation but don't forget the Creator.Happy seeking! Cindy

"Come by the hills to the land where fancy is free; And stand where the peaks meet the sky and the rocks reach the sea.Where the rivers run clear and the bracken is gold in the sun. and cares of tomorrow must wait till this day is done"--Loreena McKennit
"In many ways, you don't just live in the country, it lives inside you"--Ellen Eilers

Visit my blog at http://www.farmerinthebelle.blogspot.com/
Go to Top of Page

sonshine4u
Chapter Guru

1205 Posts

April
New Prague MN
USA
1205 Posts

Posted - Aug 05 2015 :  05:20:56 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I love being in creation and worshiping the Lord. He created it and we can see Him in it. His beauty and majesty surround us. It sounds like you are needing a time of rest and reflection from "religion" and seek the Lord in quiet moments with the Lord in His creation. I would suggest that you don't throw out the Bible in the midst of your rest and reflection. In fact, I would recommend that you spend time reflecting on His words as you're in nature. Some of my most special times with God have been in the mountains or along a stream or looking at the clouds. Read Psalm 23 and allow God to restore your soul. Reflect on Psalm 8, 24, 104, and 139 and let Him speak to you through His words and the world around you.

I'll be praying for you as you embark on this journey. The Lord is good and His love never fails.

:)

Farmgirl Hugs!

~April
River Valley Farmgirls
Chapter Leader

~Playing in the Sonshine~
Go to Top of Page

Song Sparrow
True Blue Farmgirl

1010 Posts

Amy
Talleyville Delaware
USA
1010 Posts

Posted - Aug 05 2015 :  08:10:35 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Hi Rachael, I was fascinated to read your post. I have always been what a dear friend of mine calls a "seeker." She's a true Christian, but understands that everyone's journey is personal, just like everyone's relationship with the Creator is personal. In my journey I have learned from many traditions, not the least of which are the spiritual beliefs of indigenous people from all over, and also Buddhism. What they all have in common is the profound love for nature, and that is very strong in the Bible as well. After all, nature is full of miracles! So my advice would be to enjoy the journey, read as much as you can from the teachings of all cultures, if something doesn't speak to your heart, move on. My own journey lead me back to the faith of my fathers-- literally! My dad's family have been Friends (also known as Quakers) going back to the 17th century, and that is where I found myself drawn. The Friends are Christians, but approach worship in a very different way. It's based on being quiet and available to hear God's personal message, in a way. You might enjoy reading about the Society of Friends. Here's can tidbit of trivia-- in Phildelphia, founded by Quaker William Penn, the major streets were named after trees, rather than an presidents or other dignitaries. This is because the Quakers feel very strongly that no person should be raised above another, or above the beautiful works of nature our Creator made. Nature is a great place to connect with the One who made us all! Happy seeking!

Happy Day!
Peace in our hearts, peace in the world
Amy (Sister#6098) www.danaherandcloud.com

Go to Top of Page

churunga
True Blue Farmgirl

3261 Posts

Marie
Minneapolis MN
USA
3261 Posts

Posted - Aug 05 2015 :  09:48:34 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I agree with Amy. Read as much as you can about all cultures and belief systems. There is so much to learn about the values of indigenous people. I am particularly drawn to those of the Lakota and Australian aboriginal people (People of the Land).

Many Christian religions are now embracing the natural world as never before. Pope Francis recently published a piece about a person's responsibility in the natural world. After all, God gave man mastery over the Earth and part of that is tending and caretaking. Buddhism has a great reverence for nature, its stillness in the present moment and its desire. I can also recommend some of the Celtic writings on Druidism. This started as an indigenous nature worship and reverence which has gone New Age and has no similarity to the beliefs of old so be careful what you read about this. (Stay away from anything published by Llewellyn.)

I wish you safe passage on your journey.

Marie, Sister #5142
Farmgirl of the Month May 2014

Try everything once and the fun things twice.
Go to Top of Page

rksmith
True Blue Farmgirl

858 Posts

Rachel
Clayton GA
USA
858 Posts

Posted - Aug 06 2015 :  2:38:47 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I agree a lot with what the others have said, so I won't say it again. I will add though, that I think the best place to start is within. If you are already feeling that connection, spend time outdoors and be silent, take it in and open yourself up to what Nature has to tell you. It is amazing at what you can learn that way. I have found the writings of St. Hildegard to be exceptionally uplifting and helpful in re-establishing my interconnectedness with Nature. But, I find that just sitting silently, observing and allowing myself to become One with Nature is the best way for me.

Rachel
Farmgirl Sister #2753

True enlightenment is nothing but the nature of one's own self being fully realised-- His Holiness the Dali Lama

http://rachelsmithhhp.com

www.madameapothecary.com

Edited by - rksmith on Aug 06 2015 2:39:02 PM
Go to Top of Page

Melina
True Blue Farmgirl

435 Posts

Melina

USA
435 Posts

Posted - Aug 13 2015 :  07:08:39 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Check out Celtic Christianity. There's a lot of mumbo-jumbo about it, but there are also many good references online to that movement. As with any spiritual journey, you need your radar turned on to separate the authentic from the dogmatic, but it's an expression of faith and spirituality that walks with old ways and nature. I felt liberated when I found my way to it.

The morning breeze has secrets to tell you. Do not go back to sleep.
Rumi
Go to Top of Page

knittingmom
True Blue Farmgirl

665 Posts

AnneMarie
Edmonton Alberta
Canada
665 Posts

Posted - Sep 01 2015 :  2:00:27 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I know exactly what you mean. I am a Christian but I feel closest to God while walking in His creation. That doesn't mean I worship his creation but I see his touch in everything. Nothing brings me more instant calm than walking in a forest.

We are part of creation and God did command humanity to be stewards of his creation so it isn't unnatural that we feel at peace there.

If you look you will find books out along the same thought process you have talked about.





"There is no foot so small that it cannot leave an imprint on this world"

"The things that matter most are not really things after all"
Go to Top of Page

RachelLeigh
True Blue Farmgirl

623 Posts

Rachel
Port Orchard WA
USA
623 Posts

Posted - Sep 02 2015 :  08:22:56 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Sorry I'm so slow to respond, everybody! There are a lot of really great suggestions here, and I'm glad that other people "get" what I'm feeling. I've been doing a lot of soul-searching these last few weeks, and I'm starting to feel more comfortable in my own skin. For me, it's part of breaking through the old traditions and expectations of my upbringing and truly being ME. Sometimes it's a challenge!


Farmgirl Sister #5159
My blog: http://14thandoak.com
Go to Top of Page

sherone_13
True Blue Farmgirl

2329 Posts

Sherone
Evanston WY
USA
2329 Posts

Posted - Sep 08 2015 :  08:03:20 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
My thought on this is: Where did Jesus go when he needed to work out the most tumultuous decisions of His life. He went to a garden! God created nature for us. He wants us to go there to be closest to Him.

Sherone

Farmgirl Sister #1682

My Blog

www.annapearlsattic.blogspot.com

My Etsy

www.etsy.com/shop/annapearlsattic

My Avon

www.youravon.com/sheronetaylor

Women are angels. When someone breaks our wings, we just jump on our broomsticks and fly! We are flexible that way!
Go to Top of Page

notathreatinsight
True Blue Farmgirl

626 Posts

Erin
Monroeville IN
USA
626 Posts

Posted - Sep 08 2015 :  09:58:15 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I really enjoyed what everyone had to say in this thread. Rachel, I feel that way sometimes too. I also want to find the balance between the appreciation for nature and feeling connected to it, and the Christian faith I was raised with. It does seem like trying to meld two worlds together that are often opposing.

Sherone, I feel like that's a really good point about Jesus. Melina, I read a little bit about Celtic Christianity this morning, and I really liked what I read about it. I'm going to keep checking back with this thread.

Erin
Farmgirl #3762

"It is... through the world of the imagination which takes us beyond the restrictions of provable fact, that we touch the hem of truth." - Madeleine L'Engle

http://www.etsy.com/shop/femmepostale/
http://www.pinterest.com/femmepostale/
Go to Top of Page

RachelLeigh
True Blue Farmgirl

623 Posts

Rachel
Port Orchard WA
USA
623 Posts

Posted - Sep 08 2015 :  10:07:22 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I'm a mess when it comes to spirituality most of the time. I was raised a non-denominational Christian and then I've been on a crazy journey since then. I was baptized Catholic about 8 years ago, but left the church 3 years after my baptism. Since then, I've been a United Methodist, and then a member of Church of the Brethren (anabaptist), and now I'm not going anywhere. I'm also a midwestern Christian, where there are churches everywhere, transplanted to Washington state, which is much more "unchurched" than other states. I'd love to explore the Mennonites, but their two churches in the area are too far away. I'm also studying native American spirituality, and I have a strong affinity for the LDS (Mormons.) On any given day, I will listen to a talk given by Mother Angelica (Catholic nun on EWTN) and then listen to a talk from a past LDS General Conference.

And then there's the nature piece. We made an offer on a house that was accepted last week, so we're going to be moving to the little maritime community of Port Orchard, WA. It sits on Sinclair Inlet, which is part of Puget Sound, and I will be utilizing the ferry to get to Seattle to work. When I'm standing on the shores of the Sound and I close my eyes, I suck in deep lungfuls of salty sea air, relish the sound of screeching seagulls and the bells dinging on boats and buoys and I just feel - at peace. It's a worship experience for me, just like when I get to the mountains and stand in the shadow of Mt. Rainier.

I'm all over the place... I feel like what I'm searching for is out there, but I don't know what that is. So I keep looking.


Farmgirl Sister #5159
My blog: http://14thandoak.com
Go to Top of Page

prariehawk
True Blue Farmgirl

2914 Posts

Cindy

2914 Posts

Posted - Sep 08 2015 :  12:56:50 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Since you live in the NW, check out Northwest Earth Institute. I took some classes years back using their materials.
Cindy

"Come by the hills to the land where fancy is free; And stand where the peaks meet the sky and the rocks reach the sea.Where the rivers run clear and the bracken is gold in the sun. and cares of tomorrow must wait till this day is done"--Loreena McKennit
"In many ways, you don't just live in the country, it lives inside you"--Ellen Eilers

Visit my blog at http://www.farmerinthebelle.blogspot.com/
Go to Top of Page

ladypony76
True Blue Farmgirl

313 Posts

Angela
Louisville MS
USA
313 Posts

Posted - Oct 07 2015 :  09:46:47 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Hey there Rachel,
I am a new one here but I do agree with what you feel. I have gone through this quite often. Just not knowing where I fit in and not agreeing with the church as a formality. I have found with what we do that I enjoy listening to cowboy church at SavetheCowboy.com Kevin is the pastor but he takes alot of stories that we live every day and shows things we can learn from out of them. I dont listen to him all the time mainly when I need inspiration. I am a Christian however I find I am more in tune with Jesus in nature also. I always have. I know this makes me different than the norm of folks. That does not matter to me. I hope I have been supportive in some small way. Blessings on your journey!!
Hugs,
Angela#6681

Farmgirl Farming on Faith!
Go to Top of Page

Rosemary
True Blue Farmgirl

1820 Posts


Virginia
USA
1820 Posts

Posted - Oct 09 2015 :  9:11:02 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Many NeoPagans weave their Christian beliefs into a spiritual belief system that is based in Nature and is not at all incompatible with the type of religious philosophy you seem to have. It appeals to those, especially women, who formerly practiced Catholicism and miss the female aspect of worship that included Mary. There's no reason why you couldn't create your own denomination and make it exactly the way you need it to be. It can be flexible enough to grow with you and evolve, like Nature.
Go to Top of Page

Rosemary
True Blue Farmgirl

1820 Posts


Virginia
USA
1820 Posts

Posted - Oct 09 2015 :  9:12:40 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Many NeoPagans weave Christianity into a spiritual belief system that is based in Nature and is not at all incompatible with the type of religious philosophy you seem to have. It appeals to those, especially women, who formerly practiced Catholicism and miss the female aspect of worship that included Mary. There's no reason why you couldn't create your own denomination and make it exactly the way you need it to be. It can be flexible enough to grow with you and evolve, like Nature.
Go to Top of Page

Ninibini
True Blue Farmgirl

7170 Posts

Nini
Pennsylvania
USA
7170 Posts

Posted - Nov 05 2015 :  10:28:59 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Hi Rachel! Hi girls!

Let ME preface with: this is going to be long and rambling, too... And since you did ask about Christianity in nature, it really is going to take on a religious tone. If you're not interested in that, I completely understand. No offense taken, no offense intended. Just want to let you know, I totally understand if you want to just bypass my post all together. But I am putting it out here because I am so passionate about this, and because Rachel asked. Hugs to you!

Next to finding God in the love we feel for those who matter most, it’s quite natural to feel His presence and His love for us when surrounded by His creation. God reveals Himself to us through nature. As the Bible says in Psalm 19:1, “The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands.” When we look at the surface, we see beauty, we see the ecosystem, His perfect “grand design,” if you will. It is truly glorious. And isn’t it amazing how all things work together for the good? Take even one aspect of His creation, a tree for instance, and see His majesty in His work. A sapling wells up out of a simple seed, through the nourishing soil, reaching up to the energy, heat and light of the sun, nurtured by the rains… Everything necessary for life was provided by Him just so that little sapling could thrive in life and continually give and contribute. He wants what’s best for that tree, and provides every advantage possible for it to thrive, despite the unsavory elements it must face. Then the tree covers and protects nature under its canopy, providing a home to the birds, animals and insects; providing food; providing signs of dangerous weather and seasons; providing more seeds of its own kind to perpetuate life; creating the echoes of movement in the woods as a harbinger of something exciting or a warning of danger… even to the point that it provides relief from an itching animal’s backside… When you consider all that that tree literally stands for, it really can take your breath away! In due season, it sheds its leaves to protect and nourish the ground. It serves as a windbreak and safe haven for animals seeking shelter from the wind, cold and snow. The tree is a source of life! It draws its nourishment from all of the other necessary elements which He has carefully thought out and provided through His creation, and it gives back to nature so much more than it takes, even in death. It is a sign, a message for mankind; there is much to be learned by enjoying and examining this one small part of the whole. It, like all of God’s creation, it is a quiet witness from and testimony to God; a thing to draw us closer to Him, which causes our heart to revel in and worship Him. We come to worship not the wondrous creation, but rather the Creator Himself who speaks to us through His gift.

So, yes, of course we are going to feel close to Him in His creation. He has revealed Himself in His marvelous works, including human beings. There is a great dignity in nature, and an even greater dignity in human life, because He created us in His likeness, and He breathed His breath of life into us. He made this beautiful garden in which we dwell, specifically for us, with every need, and every good and pleasing thing for us in Mind. And, just as our hearts long to know more about who and why we are, He longs to have the most intimate relationship with us, and for us to know more about who He is, and who we are IN His heart, just as any Father would his child. Only THIS Father never lets down, never destroys, never breaks His promises. He is always there, always waiting, always watching, always hoping, always uplifting, always believing in us, always merciful, always loving, always providing, always saving… He is Love, and all His ways are life-giving. True, we are in a terribly fallen world. But just like that tree, even though we live in a world of chaos, He has given us everything we need to thrive and know Him DESPITE our circumstances. And our greatest gift is faith, which is also our greatest challenge. That is, faith to overcome what we see; faith to trust in Him and His Word; faith to find Him through nature; and faith to believe He loves us more than anything else and that He is ultimately in control and has our best interests always in mind, and to believe it will be all right. You know, one of my favorite things about being in nature, especially deep in the woods, is experiencing His amazing peace. It’s a gift for the soul.

So, yes, absolutely: I truly believe we see a glimpse of Heaven in nature – a still, small voice cries out, “Hang in there! Look, there is so much more happening than meets the eye! See how even in the smallest element of a cell – of an atom! - I have created marvelous works to bring forth goodness and life! See how even in the largest things there is beauty and all things work together for good! That’s all ME, my child! Trust me! I am here! Celebrate the good things I have given you! Delight in knowing Me through My marvelous works! I am here waiting to walk with you in the garden! Speak to Me, and I will speak to your heart. No matter what life brings, do not be downhearted! I am here working all things together for your good, and I have you in the crux of my arms! Peace! Let all be well with your soul!”

And as I mentioned, as I know that you know, when a tree dies and falls to the ground, there is still life! The tree returns to the soil, it feeds and nurtures other creatures, it provides shelter, it provides protection… And from its seed comes new life! Another amazing lesson to be learned from nature! It is NOT over just because it seems to be! Every season comes with a new phase of the life cycle – birth in spring, growth in summer, harvest in autumn, rest in the winter. .. It does not end. It simply doesn’t. Just like with God, life never truly ends. God has everything under control. He has even provided a way for those who have given themselves over to chaos to return home to Him. He gave His Only Begotten Son as an atonement for our sins and as a sacrifice to wash them away and make us new. In Jesus, God humbled – empted – Himself and took on our flesh so that we would know and be saved. We see this "salvation story" acted out in the cycle of nature, and the cycle of life! We have an indescribable dignity and worth because of His love for us. He Himself bridged every last gap between divine and His creation - His CHILDREN - so that we would know that we are always one in family, in spirit and in life. Because of Jesus, there is always hope! How amazing that we can learn the lesson of Christ’s life, death and resurrection to new life – our salvation story! – through His marvelous works! God always speaks to us through His creation. We must never, ever, however, make the mistake of diminishing Him in any way by calling Him his own creation. Nature is not God. He CREAT-ED, He is not His own works!

Now I’m also going to say something that has been wearing heavy on my heart for a very long time:

We humans have a tendency to want to change God, or to conform Him to what we “feel” is right. God cannot be changed, He cannot conform… He IS Perfect. He is Pure Spirit - so pure that in His pure dazzling light, His pure love burns away anything that is unholy and unpure, so that which remains is pure and holy and worthy to stand in His presence and dwell with Him. WE are the fallible, imperfect ones, who are subject to the very chaotic, fallen world in which we live. He has provided every means for us to come to Him. And whether we like it or not, it is on our shoulders as to whether we follow Him or choose to make our own paths. Our own paths are always imperfect, and we always fall prey to whatever lurks in the shadows along the way. We cannot blame God for this – this is of our own choosing. Please just remember: He is the same yesterday, today and always (c.f. Hebrews 13:8). He loves us with His whole Heart, He gave everything that we might live and know Him. We cannot, cannot, cannot expect Him to bless us when we are steeped in evil, in whatever form that may be. We can always reach out of the mire and pray that He takes our hand and pulls us out. He love us! He WILL do that for us! It may not be how we expect, but it will always be greater than anything we could’ve imagined. He WILL put us on firm ground, clean us up and give us what we need to move forward in Him. But if we continue to insult Him, ignore Him, neglect Him, abuse Him, choose other things over Him, and try to change Him, we have another thing coming… He has warned us about that, too. Not because He wants it for us, but because He loves us and wants us to change our ways and follow Him. In nature, we only see a glimpse of the wonder of Heaven that He has in store for us. That being the case, He has provided us a way out so we do not succumb to evil; but if we do not choose His Way out, if we do not choose to follow Him and live for Him, we are going to remain perpetually lost, perpetually victims of evil, and perpetually separated from Him – again, of our own accord. So it’s imperative that we get it right: we can find Him and learn about Him through His creation, but we must never EQUATE Him WITH His creation.

And never believe for one minute that He will bow down to His creation. Perfection is Perfection – it is not going to get better by changing. WE are the imperfect ones. WE need to change. WE need to bow down to HIM and HIS will and live life the way He intended. It’s not a control thing for God. He gives us free will, after all. He made it this way because He loves us and wants us to come to Him out of love. He wants the absolute best for us. He knows every cell in our body, every hair on our head, every fiber of our being. Following His instructions is the only way we will ever be happy and find peace. Truly. We need to get our hearts and minds right with God so that we can live right for God; we should bless Him in every way for the gift of life He has bestowed upon us! It’s all on us. He has already given everything we need and His love is radiating through us… What we actually do with this precious gift of life He has given us? That’s all on us. Just remember, whatever you do, that He loves you and is always there waiting for you with open arms.

Hugs and love –

Nini



Farmgirl Sister #1974

www.papercraftingwithnini.ctmh.com

God gave us two hands... one to help ourselves, and one to help others!


Edited by - Ninibini on Nov 05 2015 10:56:10 PM
Go to Top of Page

marjean
True Blue Farmgirl

3811 Posts

Marsha
Deltona FL
USA
3811 Posts

Posted - Nov 10 2015 :  10:25:11 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
This is a topic near and dear to my heart. Love for God and all of his creations. I'm simplifying my life by getting rid of everything from this material world and am starting to live now like I will be living in the paradise earth soon to come. The whole earth will be a beautiful paradise garden. Things will be just like God intended when he put Adam and Eve in the garden of Eden.

I love nature and being outdoors exploring and taking in all of his wonderful works and enjoying the life he meant for us to have. When, we all have perfect health and live forever just imagine how much closer to God we will get and how much we will learn with a perfect mind about all of his creations and the gifts to learn anything we want to in order to be happy!

He will continue to teach us through his word and guide us so we can live the real life! I hope you find that happiness too in your journey!

Farmgirl sister #308
Buying Club & Marketing
www.marketsofsunshine.com
Bible Research
www.jw.org
Go to Top of Page

Annika
True Blue Farmgirl

5602 Posts

Annika

USA
5602 Posts

Posted - Nov 10 2015 :  11:37:13 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I don't think they are incompatible at all. St.Francis found much inspiration and peace in nature, as does the Dalai Lama and many other spiritual beings. Nature gives me hope and peace and brings me to a spiritual balance. No matter what name you know God by, I cannot help but think that you would find the divine presence in nature. Working in the soil, listening to the wind in the trees, the hum of bumblebees, the crash or waves and thunder...the silence of snow. How are you not close to God? We are part of nature too.
Go to Top of Page

prariehawk
True Blue Farmgirl

2914 Posts

Cindy

2914 Posts

Posted - Nov 10 2015 :  9:08:38 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
This from a humorous bumper sticker: God's original plan was to hang out in a garden with some naked vegetarians.
Cindy

"Come by the hills to the land where fancy is free; And stand where the peaks meet the sky and the rocks reach the sea.Where the rivers run clear and the bracken is gold in the sun. and cares of tomorrow must wait till this day is done"--Loreena McKennit
"In many ways, you don't just live in the country, it lives inside you"--Ellen Eilers

Visit my blog at http://www.farmerinthebelle.blogspot.com/
Go to Top of Page

Ninibini
True Blue Farmgirl

7170 Posts

Nini
Pennsylvania
USA
7170 Posts

Posted - Nov 12 2015 :  4:59:00 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
LOL! CINDY!!!!! That's soooooo bad!!! LOL!!! And yet, 'sure can't argue with it! LOL!!! I just love your sense of humor - you always make me laugh! Thank you for the giggle! Have a great night! Hugs - Nini

Farmgirl Sister #1974

www.papercraftingwithnini.ctmh.com

God gave us two hands... one to help ourselves, and one to help others!

Go to Top of Page

bramblerose
True Blue Farmgirl

77 Posts



Canada
77 Posts

Posted - Nov 17 2015 :  11:27:24 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I am exactly in this place and have been for many years. I don't fit "in the pew" anymore, and some of that is from my many years of being an (overly) active participant in several churches, and have seen the wide swing from extreme legalism to extreme "charismatics" to "just being." I can't do it any more... being condemned, manipulated, or over-busy in activities that, to me, seemed to be little more than self-serving armour-polishing.

I want my faith to be everyday, fresh, practical, revitalizing. Not weary, burned out, or fear- and guilt-motivated. The kind of faith that has an open heart and open hearth. Where Love of God and for God flows freely without constraint or condemnation.

I could elaborate on my journey, but I will not, for it's been a hard and painful journey, and it's through God's love and grace that I kept close to Him. And a good portion, if not all, of my healing has been through nature, His creation. I do not worship creation, but I see His signature on every leaf, hear His voice in the wind, His constancy in the changing of the seasons. Death and rebirth. Uniqueness and inter-dependancy.

I have called myself a "closet Celtic Christian," as there are aspects of Celtic Christianity that speak to me, especially the profound simplicity, without the "trappings" of modern "church-ianity."

Ann

My life on the ranch ... http://a-thousandhills.blogspot.com
Go to Top of Page

cajungal
True Blue Farmgirl

2348 Posts

Catherine Farmgirl Sister #76
Houston Area Texas
2348 Posts

Posted - Dec 07 2015 :  07:58:54 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Nini expressed in words and Scripture with such eloquence a description of God's creation and our connection to it. How beautiful. I agree with all y'all about the impact that nature has on us.

About a month before my grandmother passed, I took her out on a nature walk, pushing her wheelchair through the local arboretum. We stopped to have a snack in the daylily garden. She sat there looking around and then said, 'I feel like I'm in church more here in the garden than in a church building'. We sat and enjoyed the sights and sounds of nature and talked about love and made a wonderful memory for me to hold on to.

I understand some of y'all's feelings of not 'fitting in'. While it is important to 'fellowship' with others, it is more important to grow in our own spiritual walk. Reading His Word, the Bible, in one's own time can be more satisfying and beneficial than going to a church service. God will reveal Himself through His Word. There are tons of people that 'go to church' and are good for nothing. There are also tons of people that don't 'go to church' and serve others with God's love every day.

Sometimes, we get hung up in our Western thinking and routine of doing things.... arrive at church, smile and greet people, find your seat, sing some songs, hear a sermon, sing some more songs, tell people bye, go home and eat. Meanwhile, there are people in China that share one Bible and each person memorizes passages to share with the others and they meet in secret hoping to not get caught.

I enjoy reading and studying Scripture in the mornings. Then, I ponder on it, think about it during the day. I feel God talking to me about what I've read while I'm feeding my animals, cleaning stalls, digging in the dirt and serving my family. I then feel God giving me a love for everyone around me and I smile and share encouragement to people I see on my errands to the store, bank, gas station, etc...

We also grow through the incredible farmgirl friendships here!



Catherine
Sister #76 (2005)
One of the best compliments from one of my daughters: "Moma, you smell good...like dirt.

Go to Top of Page

queenmushroom
True Blue Farmgirl

985 Posts

Lorena
Centerville Me
USA
985 Posts

Posted - Apr 23 2016 :  08:34:35 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
The trees raise their branches to praise HIM.
The wind is the rush of angels wings.
The songs of the birds are psalms to HIM.
The mountains show HIS majestic power.
The voice of the brooks is HIS soothing voice.
The voice of the oceans is HIS song.
The voice of thunder is HIS word of command.
The valleys and fields are HIS provision of shelter and nourishment.

I can't remember what verse (maybe Nini knows) but it does say that nature does show that there is GOD. And HIS word is written upon his Rock, Jesus (I'm saying this part). Now, there's nothing wrong with seeing God's handiwork in nature, but we are not to worship nature. We are to worship GOD and Jesus. Just because one attends a church, doesn't mean God is in that church. Churches, themselves are man made meeting places to discuss and teach The Gospel. In churches, you still find strife and sin. Maybe there's church elders and pastors that are not right in their walk with God. Maybe members are causing strife. No church is perfect as man is very far from it. Find one that preaches from the Bible and accepts it as the authoritative word of God and do not throw your Bible away. Also remember, churches are hospitals for those who are sick in spirit and there is no cure until He returns.

God Bless.

Patience is worth a bushel of brains...from a chinese fortune cookie
Go to Top of Page

prariehawk
True Blue Farmgirl

2914 Posts

Cindy

2914 Posts

Posted - Apr 23 2016 :  9:36:15 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
This is the Canticle of Creation that was written by Saint Francis of Assisi in 1279:

Most High, all Powerful, Good Lord, yours is the praise, the glory and the honor and every blessing.

To You alone, Most HIgh, do they belong and no one is worthy to speak your name.

Praised be you, my Lord, with all your creatures, especially Sir Brother Sun, who makes the day and enlightens us through you.
And he is lovely, shining with great splendor for he heralds you, Most High.

Praised be you, my Lord, through Sister Moon and Stars, in heaven you have formed them, lightsome and precious and fair.

Praised be you, my Lord, through Brother Wind, and through air and cloud and calm and every weather through which you sustain your creatures.

Praised be you, my Lord, through Sister Water, so very useful and humble and precious and chaste.

Praise be you, my Lord, through Brother Fire, through whom you illumine our night, and he is handsome and merry, robust and strong.

Praised be you, my Lord, for our Sister Mother Earth, in her sovereignty she nourishes us bringing forth all kinds of fruits with colored flowers and herbs.

Praised be you, my Lord, for those who forgive for love of your love, and who bear sickness and trial.

Blessed are those who endure in peace, for by you, Most High, they will be crowned.

Praised be you, my Lord, for our Sister Bodily Death from whom no one living can escape.

Woe to those who die in mortal sin!

How blessed are those whom Sister Death will find in your most holy will, for the second death can do them no harm.

Praise and bless, my Lord, thank him and serve him humbly but grandly!



Saint Francis wrote this not long before he left this earth. That we could all be so joyful!
Cindy

"Come by the hills to the land where fancy is free; And stand where the peaks meet the sky and the rocks reach the sea.Where the rivers run clear and the bracken is gold in the sun. and cares of tomorrow must wait till this day is done"--Loreena McKennit
"In many ways, you don't just live in the country, it lives inside you"--Ellen Eilers

Visit my blog on Tumblr: eclecticstarlightcollectorbluff
Go to Top of Page

RachelLeigh
True Blue Farmgirl

623 Posts

Rachel
Port Orchard WA
USA
623 Posts

Posted - Apr 24 2016 :  9:13:54 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I’ve read all of your posts and responses to my initial post, and I love the varying ways in which we, as women, choose to worship. I love that we recognize that there is something greater than ourselves.

I made the initial post above about nine months ago. I’ve been a “seeker” for the past 15 years, moving from one branch of Christianity to another while I tried to find what I was looking for. WHAT I was looking for, I didn’t actually know. All I knew was that Christian churches left me cold and that I felt closer to God standing in the middle of His creation than I ever did sitting in a pew.
About five months ago, I decided that enough was enough. We’d moved to a new area and all the churches I “auditioned” left me feeling cold inside, so I decided to take a step back. I made a list of what I truly believed and realized that my beliefs had very little to do with Christianity. Most of the things I told myself I believed weren’t really true – I felt that I HAD to believe those things. I’ve been a researcher by nature for most of my life, so I began to research the beliefs of the major religions of the world to see if there was one that actually lined up with my core beliefs since it wasn’t Christianity. It wasn’t long before I found it – Judaism. This was a bit of a surprise, but not really. My great, great grandmother was Jewish, and I’ve since learned that many of my ancestors were Jewish before they were Catholicized upon coming to America. (The genetics of my VERY curly hair finally make sense!) I met with a rabbi at a Reform Judaism synagogue, completed a 12-week Judaism 101 class, and am now studying one-on-one with the rabbi. Judaism is where my beliefs really lie, and where I fit. Rabbi Sarah told me that some people just have a Jewish soul, and that those people will seek for decades until they find their way home to Judaism, and I believe it. I just celebrated at my first Passover Seder with my husband and the small Jewish community that I’m now involved in. It was joyous and beautiful and, as foreign as parts of it were, it still felt like home. I will start taking Hebrew lessons in a few weeks.

This is a very brief summary of a decades-long journey, but I guess I just wanted to update this post because I started it, and because it took some hard analysis of myself and my beliefs – or lack of belief, when it comes to Christianity – to make me realize that I was never going to find what I was looking for as long as I let fear hold me back. (I’m from a long line of Christians and you DON’T walk away from it.) I will continue to worship God in nature because that’s one of the things that feeds my soul, but I also feel that same sense of peace every Friday evening at sundown when I light my Shabbat candles and say the prayers. I’m not seeking anymore – now I’m just learning, studying, and incorporating Judaism into my life. And I’m happy!



Farmgirl Sister #5159
My blog: http://14thandoak.com
Go to Top of Page
Page: of 2 Family Matters: Previous Topic Christianity and nature - thoughts? Next Topic  
Next Page
 New Topic  Reply to Topic
 Printer Friendly
Jump To:
Snitz Forums 2000 Go To Top Of Page