'Putting your head in the clouds can be good for mental health'
The pictures the clouds paint are different every day.
We all know the beauty of white, fluffy, cumulous clouds against a blue sky and the colours of a sunset can be incredibly awe-inspiring.
When we are being asked to look after our mental health, taking a few minutes each day to gaze at, and put our heads in the clouds might not be as bad as it sounds.
It’s relatively easy to know how to keep physically fit.
We’ll know if we are able to walk upstairs without getting out of breath, or do a Joe Wicks workout and still be able to walk the next day.
But keeping mentally fit may be harder.
Many of us trundle through life, not really giving it much thought until we’re in the middle of lockdown and forced to live in a way which is far from normal.
Cloud spotting, I’m sure, is good exercise for our mental health.
Looking at the clouds we have our horizons lifted, seeing objects which can be miles away.
It also connects us to others who can look up at the same clouds from a different place and enjoy the view too.
I saw a great picture recently composed of four photographs of the sky by four family members who were separated geographically.
They chose to look at the sky at the same time and show each other what they saw.
In joining the pictures together came a beautiful connectivity.
Lifting our eyes upwards as a way of getting a different perspective is something which has been encouraged for thousands of years.
The writer of Psalm 121 says ‘ I lift up my eyes to the mountains— where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth’.
My mountains are the clouds and in looking up my mind finds peace and my soul rest in God who made them.
The Reverend Andy West is an interim minister at Cemetery Road Baptist Church, Napier Street, Sharrow.