When The View Gets Bad, Change The Channel You Are Watching

Joe taking a pause on Mt. Sherman
9 year old Joe takes in the beauty from Mt. Sherman

“I love to think of nature as an unlimited broadcasting station, through which God speaks to us every hour, if we will only tune in.”          ~George Washington Carver

Tonight we went to the movies because last night hubby finished reading The Hobbit to our boys. They could barely then wait another day to see the film, so off we went. Although I have never read The Hobbit (it is currently, however, loaded onto my Kindle for reading), I thoroughly enjoyed the movie. Because I am somewhat like a squirrel on crack, I was surprised I enjoyed the film as much as I did. It’s hard to keep my interest for 2 hours and 39 minutes straight.

What struck me most about the movie was the incredible scenery. It got me to thinking about this planet we live on and how amazing it is. When something horrible happens in the world, like a deadly shooting rampage at a movie theater or an elementary school, for example, I am plagued with negative thoughts. The one thing that always makes me feel better in those situations is looking at photos of the breathtaking scenery on this rotating rock. Despite the fact that I will probably never travel to Patagonia or New Zealand, or any of the myriad other stunning locales on Earth, I take comfort in knowing these places exist. When I want to see them, I visit Trek Earth and their images bring me peace. Sometimes when things are bad I will go out for a quick walk on the open space behind our house and replace all the negativity with the beauty I see around me in the smallest things, a tortoise burrowing into a hole for winter, a coyote pouncing on a vole, a yucca plant in bloom.

Bad things happen all the time. Some seem too big to overcome. But, there is solace all around us if we look for it. For me, there is comfort in the knowledge that I am but a tiny part of this big, beautiful world. There was beauty here before I arrived and there will be beauty here after I leave. I can’t always escape the negative, but I can change the channel once in a while to remind myself that quiet, beauty, and wonder still exist. It may not cure the evils of the world, but it does make me look at them differently.



He doesn’t know the world at all
Who stays in his nest and doesn’t go out.
He doesn’t know what birds know best
Nor what I want to sing about,
That the world is full of loveliness.

When dewdrops sparkle in the grass
And earth’s aflood with morning light,
A blackbird sings upon a bush
To greet the dawning after night.
Then I know how fine it is to live.

Hey, try to open up your heart
To beauty; go to the woods someday
And weave a wreath of memory there.
Then if tears obscure your way
You’ll know how wonderful it is
To be alive.

Anonymous Child
Written in Terezin Concentration Camp

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