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Listening for God’s voice in all creation

Light for the Way seriesWe invite you to peek inside our weekly Light for the Way devotional series provided for staff.

By Chaplain Steve Richards, Optage Hospice  
Light for the Way seriesThe earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it…Psalm 24:1a, NIV

Take a moment and look around. What do you see?

Take a moment and listen. What do you hear?

Take a few moments: What do you smell? What taste is in your mouth? What thoughts are passing through your mind?

Now take a moment and feel your feet touching the ground. 

The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it.

Recently I’ve noticed that, in a world of infinite possibilities, my thoughts and sensations are very selective. For instance, driving along I pass by many signs and billboards, but then all of a sudden one catches my eye. Why was I drawn to notice that one, but not any of the others? Or when I am listening to music, suddenly a lyric catches my attention. Why that lyric, and not any of the others I heard? Then there are times someone says or does something that creates an emotional response in me. Why did I get emotionally charged about that thing, but not others?

The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it.

Recently I’ve been trying to be more aware of what God is saying beyond just what I read or devotional messages I hear. I’ve been experiencing God by opening my whole self to the Spirit’s presence in all creation. As the Psalmist writes, “Day after day [the heavens] pour forth speech; night after night they reveal knowledge” (Psalm 19:1-2). Paul also says that Christ is present in all things (Colossians 1:17), and nothing can separate us from God’s love in Christ Jesus (Romans 8:38-39). When we have faith that God’s love underpins everything, we can allow God to speak to us through all things.

So, this begs the question: When we allow God’s Spirit to become revealed to us in this way, what is God saying?

What is God saying to you through the things you see?

What is God saying to you through the things you hear?

What is God saying through the things you smell, the things you taste, through the thoughts passing through your mind, through your emotions, through the dreams you have at night, and even through those you disagree with? What is God saying to you through the whole of creation?

Take a moment and feel your feet touching the ground.

The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it.

Concluding staff prayer

All powerful God, it is by your grace and strength that we are able to serve you day after day. Your Word tells us that as we offer a cup of refreshing water in your Name, we do it for you. We are blessed to offer this cup of water to others in the form of kind words and tender physical, spiritual or emotional care. Whether those we serve need much or little assistance, may we offer it in your name. May we also understand our own needs and seek ways to strengthen one another. We now lift up our joys and concerns for prayer. Thank you that we can do all things through your strength, O Lord. Amen.

Steve RichardsChaplain Steve Richards has been working with Optage Hospice since 2019, first as an intern and then as a PHS employee in 2021. Prior to that, he was a stay-at-home dad to his two children and previously worked as a high school teacher in England where he taught religion and philosophy. He grew up in London, England (UK), and has been living in the USA since May 2005. He moved here to be with his wife. He is grateful for the privilege of working with PHS as it helps him live out the spiritual truth: "This is how love is made complete amongst us... in this world we are like Jesus" (1 John 4:17).

The Light for the Way series provides staff with an examination of a biblical reading to deepen our focus on scripture. Thank you for engaging with this series as we seek wisdom through prayer and reflection as a Christian Ministry.

Find more in the Light for the Way series:
Returning to the Garden
A promise to claim
Get to know us: a Christian ministry
Introducing Light for the Way, a new devotional series

In addition to Light for the Way, you can find reflections, devotions, music and other resources on the Pastoral Care resources website

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