Paying Attention

Eugene Peterson loved Denise Levertov’s poem, “Overland to the Islands,” in which the poet depicts a dog meandering “intently haphazard,” sniffing and leaping rocks, taking note of everything it smells and dances across. Through it all, the dog:

keeps moving, changing pace and approach but not direction—every step an arrival.

Events, encounters, and adversity may seem random to us, but those with eyes to see and ears to hear will recognize the Father’s heart on display. Only God knows what is in store for each of us this year, but the intrepid disciple keeps advancing, discerning every heartbreak and heart song along the path as an arrival on our journey of re-creation. Eternity hangs in the balance of how intently we pay attention.

“So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.” (2 Corinthians 4:16-18 | ESV)

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