How Hiking Regularly Can Bring You Closer to God

Posted By on June 8, 2017

People hike in order to stay fit and healthy. They don’t mind walking long distances as long as they can achieve their fitness goals. Aside from staying healthy, hiking also brings you closer to God. If you are a religious person, this is your chance of strengthening your faith even more.

Being one with nature

The best part about hiking is that you become one with nature. As you walk along the roads, you will start to appreciate the beauty of nature. You will see tall trees, green grasses, lots of animals and the blue skies. As these are all creations of God, you will also appreciate Him even more. We were all called to be stewards of God’s creations. However, with what we have done to the environment, it seems like we are far from being considered stewards. The reason why most people are not really appreciative of nature is that they don’t have the opportunity to see it in its full glory. By hiking frequently, you will have a better understanding of God’s creations and why you should do your role of protecting them.

A moment of reflection

When you are hiking, you are usually alone. You have the time to reflect and think about life in general. You also discern about your problems, faults and worries. Along the way, you realise that you are no longer connected well to God. As a result, you become less faithful. You don’t seek for His help in your daily life anymore. This is your chance to reconnect with God and appreciate Him for everything that He has done for you. It is also the time to realise that when you feel like you are alone and helpless, He is there for you.

Getting rid of the noise

When we are faced with lots of noise each day, we become less connected with God. We are driven away by the loud noise around us and the fast-paced life. We tend to just live every day like it is the same. We no longer take a pause to evaluate ourselves and our relationship with God. As always, in the silence of our hearts, we will start seeing God. Just take some time to get rid of the loud noise around you and you will realise that God is just there waiting for you to open up.

A time to relax

Imagine yourself being extremely tired and worried. When you are at this point in your life, you become totally stressed. You don’t care about people around you. It is also difficult to just take a pause and stay optimistic. This is also the time when you think of all sorts of evil just to cope up with the stress. This will start to go away the moment you hike. It might be a challenging physical activity, but it is also relaxing. Even if you have walked several miles, you will realise that you are not tired at all. If anything, you feel replenished. You think that you are a new person. You have left your burdens behind and continued your journey.

Hike regularly

There are a lot of great hiking trails around the world. You can even find the best hiking Northern California trails if you live in the area. You just have to spend some time over the weekends or during the long holidays to do it. You might be very busy with work or with some other matters and it is totally understandable. You don’t have to force yourself when you are not yet physically ready.

Hiking is something that should inspire and motivate you. It shouldn’t make you feel tired or burdened. Before heading out to hike, make sure that you are fully prepared physically and emotionally. It would be easier for you to connect with God and appreciate the beauty of things around you the moment you have prepared yourself for this journey.

Once you have started hiking, you will realise that it is a fun and relaxing activity. You might even decide to do it again the next time around. You will also realise that you have rekindled your relationship with God and your faith has become stronger than ever.

Also read: Why Clean Water is a Blessing from God

Why Clean Water is a Blessing from God

Posted By on November 2, 2016

why-clean-water-is-a-blessing-from-godPeople rely on clean drinking water to survive. They say that you can survive for three weeks with no food, but only three days without water. Certainly, without water, human beings cannot survive. Fresh water is a vital resource and when polluted, can be devastating not only to human health but also to the environment. Water is a part of our lives. It is used in and out of our homes. It is needed to produce the food we eat, the products we buy and even the energy that we use.

Clean Water, Nutrition and Learning

Clean water aids in good nutrition. Some developing countries face problems with poor drinking water. Unclean water can cause intestinal infection or inflammation that leads to malabsorption and malnutrition. When the intestines properly absorb nutrients, children can be healthier. Good nutrition and learning go hand in hand. For learning to occur, there has to be enough nutrients to keep the brain in proper working condition. Poor nutrition leads to poor concentration and interest. Healthier children, on the other hand, are more energetic, have better stamina and self-esteem.

Clean Water and Food

Water is needed to produce the food we eat. Crops cannot grow without water, but did you know that meat has higher water footprint than grains or vegetables? One pound of beef takes approximately 1,800 gallons of water. This huge amount is due to the amount of water needed to grow grass, feed and forage that cattle eat over its lifetime. Not to mention the water used for drinking, processing and cleaning.

Clean water is also necessary in preparing food. Meals should be prepared in a safe and hygienic manner. Harmful microorganisms in food and drinks could not just spoil the food, but also poison our body. Germs can easily multiply, so it is best to get water from a safe source when it will be used for preparing food. It should also be stored correctly.

Clean Water and the Aquatic Life

Surface waters are filled with living things. The earliest forms of life appeared in water and nearly all fishes live only in water. Some plants grow in water and play a role in underwater ecosystems. Aquatic animals and plants need quality water, or water that is clean and cool. Pollution has contributed to fish kill and other environmental concerns. Therefore, clean water is critical to plants and animals in the water.

Clean Water as Economic Driver

Reliable, clean water is a clear economic driver. Manufacturing companies use trillions of gallons of fresh water each year. The beverage industry depends on clean water to produce billion worth of products. Fishing is also a billion dollar industry that supports families. Aquatic recreation is a big business. Agriculture depends on clean water for crops, livestock and irrigation.

Clean Water for Recreation

It may seem insignificant, but humans depend on water for recreation. Surely, aquatic businesses benefit from water, but we cannot underestimate the truth that we also enjoy recreation around water. Whether it is fishing, swimming, kayaking or picnic by the lake, clean water is substantial to these.

Clean Water and Sanitation

It’s easy to open the faucet and use water to wash your hands or for other sanitary purposes. You might even be using one of the best water softener systems to make your water more compatible with soap and extend the life of your plumbing. However, this is not the case for everyone in the world. Many don’t have access to clean, safe water for sanitation. Lack of clean water breeds disease and scarcity affects more than 40 percent of the world’s population, an alarming figure that is seen to increase as a result of climate change.

Access to clean water is a basic human right. Water is crucial for survival of living things. It is needed for personal hygiene, recreation, irrigation and industrial operations. While there are vast water resources available in highly developed countries, the fact remains that almost 1 billion people in developing countries do not have access to potable water. States should plan long-term projects and provide communities with safe water. However, each of us has a role to play when it comes to taking care of our water resources. In our own little way, we can prevent water pollution and conserve water while we are still enjoying this blessing from above.

Why God Wants You to Take Care of your Garden

Posted By on April 14, 2016

Why God Wants You to Take Care of your GardenAmongst all the beautiful creations of God, nature seems to top it all, offering unlimited resources to mankind since time immemorial. With an array of flowers, trees and small living beings forming an essential part of nature, one often wonders what good mankind did to deserve such a blessing from the Almighty.

Owning your very own garden at home is undoubtedly one of the best ways to Thank God for this wonderful gift and you can give it your time and dedication to make it a complete beauty. And you can make your garden look beautiful easily. Whether it be cutting grasses or tending to the lawns, gardening can be fun.

What does the Bible say?

If you go through the Bible, you will know that God has clearly mentioned that he wishes that along with humans, animals and land should also multiply and become fruitful and having a garden is one of the best ways to fulfill this wish of the Lord. A garden is not only home to some of the most beautiful flowers, plants and trees but also becomes a dwelling place for small living beings and animals such as squirrels, birds, butterflies and much more; all of which are a part of God’s creation.

Moreover, the Bible also states that God reveals himself and his power through his creations. Taking care of Mother Nature and your garden helps us to realize the Lord’s eternal power which controls all that happens in the universe. Flowers bloom on their own; trees grow bit by bit with every passing day and bear fruits without us playing a pivotal role in the same. This unique creation of God not only makes our lives lively and colourful but also eliminates the darkness in this world, moving us towards goodness.

Why is nature so important?

Though man continues to be the most prominent creation of God, nature too is an essential part of God’s creation and must be given as much importance on Earth in order for us humans to survive. Apart from giving us oxygen to breathe, trees are useful for humans in numerous ways and need to be grown, nourished and looked after for the rest of our lives. This is why only ignorant people will disregard nature or treat it badly as they fail to understand its importance in our lives.

What difference can I as an individual make?

You are wrong if you think that you as an individual cannot make a difference in this universe. The garden you grow has some unique trees, plants and shrubs along with some tiny living beings that have no other place to call their own! You can make the birds and squirrels happy with your garden.

Taking care of your garden and allowing it to grow day after day is not a very difficult job and can be managed well if you spend a few hours on it every day. Investing in gardening tools and equipment like riding mowers can make all the difference in making this task a whole lot easier. Once you start taking care of it, you too will feel good about it and the garden will become a part of your everyday life.

Also see: What Does the Bible Say About Sleep

What the Bible Says About Sleep

Posted By on September 5, 2015

bibleAlthough sleep seems like an unnecessary daily ritual you have to go through, it actually does the you good, recharging your mind and your body especially after a highly stressful day. Without it, you wouldn’t be able to take on the next day quite as well.

Maybe you do know that you need sleep, but sleep doesn’t come easily. Your mind goes into overdrive and a billion thoughts attack your brain. How much do you owe on that credit card. Your mom is not doing well. There’s a weird pain in your knee that might be serious. Whatever it is, it’s keeping you awake.

“It is useless for you to work so hard from early morning until late at night, anxiously working for food to eat; for God gives rest to his loved ones.” – Psalm 127:2

In this psalm, God is telling you to let the things that bother you lie and rest with you while we sleep, because the solution to your problems will become clearer in the morning when you rise.

Elijah, the Prophet, was so emotionally, physically, and spiritually spent from dealing with false prophets and receiving a death sentence from Queen Jezebel that he ran away.

“’I have had enough, Lord,’ Elijah said. ‘Take my life. I am no better than my ancestors.’ Then he lay down under the tree and fell asleep…All at once an angel touched him and said, ‘Get up and eat.’…He ate and drank and then lay down again.” = 1 King 19:4-6

When you are in crisis, you sometimes want to just get out of there, or self-medicate yourself with alcohol or shopping. Rather, the best thing to do is to take care of your mind and body, which means sleep and eat. Even a short nap is sufficient to recharge your brain.

Although the Bible indicates that sleep is much needed for you to function properly, It also warns against over-sleeping.

“Do not love sleep or you will grow poor; stay awake and you will have food to spare.” – Proverbs 20:13

“I went past the field of the sluggard…the man who lacks judgement…I applied my heart to what I observed and learned a lesson from what I saw. A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of he hands to rest – and poverty will come on you like a bandit and scarcity like an armed man.” – Proverbs 24:30-34

These proverbs illustrate that you should sleep in moderation. Too little sleep, and you won’t have enough mental and physical energy to deal with your problems. Too much sleep, and you will live in poverty.

Having problems sleeping? Pray to the Lord before you go to bed.

“David testified, ‘I will both lay me down in peace, and sleep: for thou, Lord, only makest me dwell in safety.’” – Psalm 4:8

Make peace with Him before laying your head down. Confess your sins and commit to His service. Read a couple of verses from the Bible. Just getting God’s word in you should relax you enough for bedtime.

Sleep also comes by easier with a comfortable bed. Investing in a good mattress, pillows, and sheet set will help you fall asleep, and stay asleep. Some of the best mattresses like a memory foam one will improve your sleep drastically, I recommend reading reviews online to make a wise purchase. Allowing you to face whatever tomorrow has to bring.

Honor God by Honoring Your Body

Posted By on August 26, 2015

god-exerciseTim sat on the church pew, as he did most Sunday mornings, and waited for the pastor to commence service.  He was a single, middle-aged man, who worked at a car dealership in one of the rich suburbs of Dallas, Texas. Tim was a god-fearing man, who tried to do everything right by the Lord, and so he always listened adeptly to the preacher, later instilling the learned life lessons through practice.

On this particular Sunday, the pastor was intent on making the congregation realize their gluttonous ways and get healthy. Texas is famed for its slogan, “Everything in Texas is bigger.” That included big trucks, big hair, and, unfortunately, big people. His churchgoers were the sort who worked nine to five jobs, ate a bucket of fried chicken for dinner, and stayed home all weekend watching TV. Tim fell into this category of people perfectly.

The pastor talked about taking care of the body physically, so that one has more physical and mental energy for everyday life, to have a better spiritual life and overall quality of life. He discussed how hard it was to fit in a daily exercise and offered the congregation suggestions that might make it easier:

  • Exercise in the morning. The mornings are calm and quiet. For most people, after breakfast is a time packed with work and responsibilities. By the end of the day, people are exhausted from the trials and tribulations of the day and just want to relax. Focus on waking up just a bit earlier to have a bit of time for yourself.
  • Vary exercise. Doing the same exercise routine over and over again gets quite boring and demotivating. If you are walking 30 minutes a day, simply vary your routine by taking different routes, or making the short drive first to pretty trails in the area.
  • Exercise with others. There’s nothing more motivating than being part of a group with the same goals. It’s easier to get out of bed if your friends are ringing your doorbell, encouraging you to join them.

The pastor talked about the body as a house for the spirit and the soul. So if the house is having issues, than the spirit and soul will also have issues. Tim took all of this to heart. One passage in particular from the Bible that the pastor highlighted stood out to him.

“Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.” – 1 Corinthians 6:19-20

After church, Tim thanked the pastor for such a moving sermon. On the drive home, Tim was already thinking of ways to change his physical life for the better. He called his good friend from work, John, who often went to a local bar for some beers after work. Tim explained that he wanted to make it a goal to get in better shape, and would John like to join him every morning at the gym before work? John, who was also single, agreed, thinking he might get a better chance at landing a girlfriend if he was more in shape.

From there, Tim and John went to the gym every morning before work, trying out different exercise equipment and talking to some of the personal trainers there about different things they could use at the gym. As Tim and John expanded their knowledge about their local gym, it became quite apparent that they had a favorite piece of machinery: the rowing machine. To get their hearts beating before they engaged in 15 minutes of rowing before going on to other exercise. They would often sit side by side, trying to outdo each other in strokes per minute. Because they were having so much fun, the time flew by, and their 15 minute warm-up session was over. After a month or so, the two friends would go to the gym earlier, so they could spend more time on the rowing machine. They know very well that the best rowing machines like the Concept2 Model E provide a fantastic all round workout.

After a few months, Tim was in the best shape of his life, and he was feeling the best he’d had in his life. Instead of staying in all weekend, Tim decided to volunteer his time at a local food bank. He realized that because he was in great physical and mental shape, he didn’t need to take the weekend of for some self-relaxing time. He could spend that time helping others instead, which made him feel that much closer to God. In the end, his pastor was right. Taking care of his body made him have the physical and mental capacity for an enriched spiritual life.

About the author

My name is Richard and I am part of a ministry dedicated to bringing young adults into relationship with Christ through worship of Jesus. I will use this blog to share my thoughts and insights into a wide range of topics.