A tangle of woods borders the parking lot of the factory where I work, and sometimes I eat my lunch in my truck for a moment outdoors.
At first the woods didn't look like much: just tangles of leafless branches and brush. Gray limbs and white snow.
But as I studied it I began to notice that at least two kinds of woodpeckers liked those trees, and so did a little flock of chickadees. Sometimes I saw cardinals, probably flying in after brunch at feeders in the subdivision behind the factory.
I'm looking forward to seeing the woods change as winter turns into spring. Will a low spot in the middle turn into a pond? Will there be toads? Tree frogs? Mosquitoes? Wildflowers?
In the same way, at first I found the factory full of strangers. Now I recognize my co-workers as single moms, recently unemployed men happy to return to work, young people just starting out ... all kinds of people with all kinds of stories.
As a writer I should study my surroundings -- not just see but notice the details.
What are some of our best ways to notice details, of our surroundings? Do little details add a lot? Can details help us connect with those around us and reveal more of Christ?
What's new down on the farm? Come and see ...