Last week, two of the co-creators of this site, Drew Ham and Mark Liederbach, spent a few days backpacking through the mountains of western NC. Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary (ww.sebts.edu), where both of us are employed, was on fall break. So we drove to the top of Mt Mitchell and hiked a 20+ mile loop that brought us back to the summit.
There were numerous reasons for tackling this endeavor. The primary reason was to spend time with God. The Bible tells us that Jesus often got away to solitary places in order to pray and spend time with His Father (see Luke 5:16). Each of the Gospels mentions that Jesus went to the mountains to pray (Matt 14:23). Because Mark and I hike at different speeds, there were hours when neither of us spoke and we were able to spend long periods of time in prayer with the Lord.
It was also a great time to memorize Scripture. I have been memorizing part of James 1, so I copied the passage on a piece of paper and carried it with me as I walked. Mark had a copy of Romans 8. It was an amazing opportunity to meditate on the words and meaning of these passages.
This past Sunday our pastor, Larry Trotter, reminded us, “Creation beckons the praise of the Creator.” (See Psalm 136.)
We did not take a computer or tablet.
We had no access to the internet or email.
We wanted to “unplug” from the screens that surround us every day – TV screens, computer screens, etc.
We were able to get out, slow down, and enjoy God’s creation.
Genesis 1:29-30 explains that God made the plants and trees and He gave them to mankind for our enjoyment. God is loving, giving, and good. He made it all. Psalm 24:1, “The earth is the Lord’s and everything in it, the world and all who live in it.” Abraham Kuyper rightly argued, There is not a square inch in the whole domain of our human existence over which Christ, who is Sovereign over all, does not cry, Mine!
1. When was the last time that you stopped to enjoy a sunset or a sunrise?
2. When was the last time you unplugged and spent time listening to the voice of God?
I suspect most of you are like me and Mark. We allow ourselves to become too busy. We are so consumed with our actions that we miss out on God’s. His love is on display. Don’t miss it!
Finally, a caveat: this site is intended to push men toward biblical manhood. I believe it is important for men to enjoy God’s creation, and worship the Creator. I believe that men should spend time with God and listen to His voice. However, I am not trying to argue that manhood is defined by being outdoors. Some scholars have pointed to Genesis 2.15 (God took the man and placed him the Garden of Eden) and tried to argue that man belongs in “the wild”. I disagree. Would we say that the wheel-chair bound male adult is less of a man because of his condition? Is the elderly man, incapable of true manhood because of his aging body? Biblical manhood is not about your ability to be outdoors.