While reflecting by email with a friend yesterday about the changing seasons, I said that autumn is my favourite season, because it shouts the Creator’s praise so brightly. I’m sure that’s not original, but I believe there is a profundity to the statement – one that could be made of any of the four seasons. Those whose preference is for spring would speak of the verdant fields shouting God’s praise. Those whose preference is for summer would speak of the bright blue sky eliciting praise. Those whose preference is for winter would speak of the delights of new-fallen snow, or icicles on trees. But me? I like fall. Nothing beats the crimson reds and the brilliant golds of Canadian maples.
I spent a couple of days in Northern Ontario last week, visiting loved ones and taking in the beauty of the surroundings. There is something truly awe-inspiring about a hillside that mere weeks ago was green as green can be, and is now awash in an array of different colours. In varying degrees, it happens every fall, but it never gets old. That’s God’s work.
I find the same thing is true of my friends who live within sight of the mountains in western Alberta and British Columbia: those snow-capped hills are always there, yet they always take one’s breath away. That’s God’s work.
As we Canadians approach the annual weekend of harvest Thanksgiving, I am moved to thank God for his handiwork in creation. I think we who live in the Concrete Jungles of the world sometimes miss out on that aspect of Thanksgiving. We focus on family and food, not always remembering that our food comes from the miraculous act of planted seeds that grow in God’s beautiful creation. All who live in more rural settings appreciate this far more. Some of our rural sisters and brothers are not afraid to remind us city-dwellers of this fact when they post signs that say, “Farmers Feed Cities!”
Just as the gorgeous falling leaves, and the verdant fields, and the bright blue sky, and the new-fallen snow shout God’s praise, so, too, do the plants that feed us. For all of this, let’s give thanks.
When Jesus was making his final entry into Jerusalem, Jesus’ followers were shouting praises to God. The Pharisees wanted them to pipe down, but in response, Jesus said, “If they keep quiet, the stones along the road would burst into cheers!” (Luke 19.40, NLT).
Let’s not let inanimate objects eclipse the praise that we, the highest of God’s created order, can give him!