Go Take A Hike

The glory of God’s creation is all around us. All we have to do is stop and open our eyes to take it in. One of my favorite ways to introduce my kids to concepts about God and His character is simply to look around at the amazing world He has made for us. There is so much wonder right where we live to teach us about our creator.

“The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands.”
Psalms‬ ‭19:1‬ ‭

Going on a ordinary walk or bike ride with your kids can become an exploration of God’s handiwork. Children are especially good at appreciating the awesome wonder of creation. It refreshes my soul as as mom to see my children’s excitement as they discover new things. It makes me stop and appreciate just how incredible our world really is!

Evidence of God’s attributes are all over creation. Four things I like to observe with my kids are God’s creative power, His artistry, the gifts and talents He gives, and His provision for all of His creatures.

God’s Creative Power

“For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—His eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse.”
Romans‬ ‭1:20‬ ‭

I often wonder why it is that nature moves us and touches our hearts so much more than man-made things. Why do I stand on the seashore, or look at a mountain scene and feel so humbled, and in awe? Why do people love to be outside? And why are we overwhelmed by the breath-taking beauty of it all?

The answer I think, is that we are so impressed by God’s creation, because we know in our hearts that He is the only one capable of creating it. God has made us an amazing world so that we can see evidence of His eternal power and divine nature.

It’s like the words of the children’s Bible song… “My God is so big, so strong and so mighty, there’s nothing my God cannot do. He made the trees, He made the seas, He made the elephants too. My God is so big, so strong and so mighty there’s nothing my God cannot do.” That’s actually a pretty good description of God’s creative power. Put simply for little ones to understand…He made it all and there is nothing He can’t do.

God’s Artistry

Our earth is the most beautiful masterpiece ever created. And God is the greatest artist there ever was or will be. From the highest mountain peak, to the tiniest insect that crawls on the ground, from the colorful fish at the bottom of the ocean, to the shining feathers of a bird in flight; God has made every detail perfect.

We could talk all day about the artistic details of creation, and we would never even begin to describe the unrivaled workmanship of our God. The colors of the different seasons are enough to leave us speechless.

No matter the season, or where we live, we can marvel at God’s creativity. Take a minute to stop and smell the flowers that our feet pass by every day. Look closely at their tiny details that so often go unnoticed.

“And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these.”
Matthew‬ ‭6:28-29‬ ‭

To see some of God’s most beautiful work, just look up at the sky. It stretches out like a brand new canvas every day, ready for the master painter to leave His strokes of brilliant color.

God-Given Gifts and Talents

“There are four things which are little on the earth, But they are exceedingly wise: The ants are a people not strong, Yet they prepare their food in the summer; The rock badgers are a feeble folk, Yet they make their homes in the crags; The locusts have no king, Yet they all advance in ranks; The spider skillfully grasps with its hands, And it is in kings’ palaces.”
Proverbs‬ ‭30:24-28‬ ‭

Little boys love to look at ant hills. We find them everywhere. They are such amazing creatures. So tiny, and yet so strong and determined. Even the Bible gives mention to them. If their hill gets knocked down, they immediately scurry to rebuild. Such a lesson in hard work and determination.

Many people are afraid of spiders, but I think they are beautiful! Every time I see one, it reminds me of the careful detail of God’s design. Why did God give such a tiny creature such a unique talent to spin webs, so delicate and perfect in symmetry? How does the spider know which way to spin and turn next? If God gave such a gift to a little spider, how much greater are the gifts and talents He gives to His children?

We can choose any of God’s creatures to study with our kids and we will discover special gifts and talents. Bees that make honey, caterpillars that change into butterflies and then fly thousands of miles, geese that fly in a perfect “V”, and lizards that change color to camouflage, are just a few examples of animals we can see every day that show us how God carefully equips all of us with unique gifts.

God’s Provision

“Consider the ravens: They do not sow or reap, they have no storeroom or barn; yet God feeds them. And how much more valuable you are than birds!” Luke‬ ‭12:24‬ ‭

Our neighborhood is full of friends who can teach us about God’s provision. We see the birds and the ducks finding their food on the ground. We talk about how they never worry because God feeds them every day. So we should have the same peace that He will give us our daily bread provide for all of our needs.

Our favorite friends to greet on our hikes are the squirrels, and we see them everywhere! We notice the acorns that have fallen, ready for them to collect. We see them scamper by and zip up the trees. They always look so carefree, like they are playing a game of tag. My sons wonder at how they can run and climb so fast. They remind us how God has made every creature so precisely, and how He takes care of everyone He has made, especially His people!

“Are not two sparrows sold for a copper coin? And not one of them falls to the ground apart from your Father’s will. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Do not fear therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows.” Matthew‬ ‭10:29-31‬ ‭

Sometimes we happen to see a creature who has sadly met his end. But even in that, there is a lesson about God’s goodness. This sweet verse from the gospel of Matthew tells us that not a single living thing leaves this world without God’s notice. We never have to fear because He sees us and He is in complete control.

“But ask the animals, and they will teach you, or the birds in the sky, and they will tell you; or speak to the earth, and it will teach you, or let the fish in the sea inform you. Which of all these does not know that the hand of the Lord has done this? In His hand is the life of every creature and the breath of all mankind.” Job‬ ‭12:7-10‬ ‭

Going Further

If you want to expand the lessons of exploring the outdoors with your kids, there are tons of fun activities you can do!

Find a free printable of a scavenger hunt to take along on your outing. Kids love hunting to find things! You could bring paper and crayons or markers and let your children draw what they see. For older kids, maybe use paint and a canvas and let them paint a sky scene.

My boys especially love mazes. Here is a fun bug maze I got from education.com. They have worksheets on just about every topic and age level. I found lots of choices that relate to the outdoors like counting with baby ducks, and spider web addition.

https://www.education.com/games/math/

Let’s use our fine motor skills to make our way through this fun maze! Please visit Education.com for more critic thinking skills and activities!

Conclusion

God’s handiwork is everywhere! His fingerprints are all over His glorious creation! If you want to teach your children more about God’s power, artistry, gifts, and provision, while making great memories…just go take a hike!

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