What inspires you?
Inspiration is defined as stimulation for the mind toward creative thought. Better yet: Divine guidance and influence. So what stimulates your mind and awakens your senses toward creativity, beauty and the divine?
This summer you may find outdoor worship offered by Woodbury area churches inspiring.
Here’s a sampling of churches offering outdoor worship:
- , Sundays, July 10 and Aug. 21 at 10:45 a.m.
- Every summer Sunday, weather permitting, at at 10:30 a.m.
- Every summer Sunday at at 10 a.m.
- Monday evenings, July 25 and Aug. 22 at the St. Croix Campus located at the corner of Bailey and Manning.
(Ed. note: If your church has an outdoor worship schedule, add it to the comments section below the article.)
Outdoor worship can be inspiring in numerous ways. But the integration of common touch points of inspiration—music, encouraging words and nature—are what make outdoor worship particularly stirring for me.
Think of how music inspires. Somehow a walk is better with your favorite tunes piped through iPod ear buds. You step to the beat, seemingly pulsed forward by the energy and rhythm of the sound. Music in my kitchen while cooking inspires me to better enjoy the task of creating a meal. Dance steps while doing dishes? Try it. See if it makes you smile.
Words carefully crafted and delivered through books, blogs or teachings can move a person to be comforted, encouraged or moved to right action.
I’m currently reading Bonhoeffer by Eric Metaxas. It’s a biography of the famous German theologian who stood against Germany’s racist regime during World War II. I’m inspired by Bonhoeffer’s willingness to pursue justice in the face of what would become immense personal sacrifice.
On a smaller scale, some bloggers write personal messages of hope for readers. Such shared struggles can offer inspiration to those of us traversing this daily life of ups and downs.
I recently read a blog post by a woman sending her child away to summer camp for the first time. I was inspired by her message of encouragement to moms like me who also will soon be loosening the apron strings for the first time.
And as our weather warms I’m lured outdoors for walking, reading, grilling and eating. There is an unmistakable splendor in doing ordinary things outside. Nature can be inspiring. While reading on my porch I heard the small chirps of baby robins nested in a shrub nearby. It was one of life’s sweet moments for my children to sneak a peek.
And I can’t begin to explain how much I enjoy the glorious feeling of the sun’s heat on my face, cool grass between my toes and a gentle breeze that rustles leaves and punctuates the summer stillness of my backyard. The grandeur of nature, God’s creation, provides abounding inspiration for hikers, campers, poets, painters, photographers, musicians, children and porch sitters like me.
So why not take in some outdoor summer worship in Woodbury? Let music and message presented among creation’s summer beauty inspire you.