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The Five Senses



I attended the recent Wild Church. If you’re not familiar with it, Wild Church is an opportunity to move outside the sanctuary to experience God in nature. The theme for the February session was “Listening”. As I walked along the river and through the woods, I discovered that not only did I become more in tune with the sounds of nature, my other senses became more active as well. I found I loved this opportunity to tune into the world around me and use all five of my senses.


Hearing As I opened my ears to listen to the sounds of nature, the first sounds I heard was the sound of traffic on the road. As I listened to the traffic driving across the bridge over the river, I noticed the sound of a car passing by was different than the big trucks. As they moved from the rattle of the bridge to the smooth street or passing in and out of puddles, I realized, a single type of sound held a myriad of differences. I began to focus my hearing on other sounds: the birds chirping and trilling, sometimes almost a conversation, the river flowing by, the sound of the rapids in the stream contrasted with the stronger rush of the river.


Touch The sensation of my footsteps on the ground varied depending on if I was sinking into the sand or clattering over the rocks. At times the trail was hardpacked, so my step was sure, but I had to walk carefully over the rocks. I reached down to feel the sensation of the soft sand and the river worn rocks. I could feel a few raindrops starting to fall and pulled my hood up over my ears.


Sight I saw the beauty of God’s creation. The trees, some covered in moss, some still with leaves, others bare. I watched the stream that led to the river where a dog off leash splashed in the water, pausing occasionally to shake off the water on his back. I saw the sand mixed with pebbles mixed with rocks. Driftwood washed ashore on the beach. I could see seaweed and new sprouts of grass and buds on bushes. The busyness of life. Signs of new growth.


Taste I found even my taste was heightened as I drank my juice. The sensory awareness increased my enjoyment from a single sip.


Smell As with my other senses I strove to put words to my sense of smell. The sweet smell of moss with the more pungent smell of seaweed. The damp earth with its own scent.


When I started my walk, I asked God to speak to me. I could almost hear Him laughing as I realized He was speaking to me using the five senses He provided. It was such a blessing to spend time with God in His wondrous creation.



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