“The heavens keep telling the wonders of God, and the skies declare what he has done.
2 Each day informs
the following day;
each night announces
to the next.
3 They don’t speak a word,
and there is never
the sound of a voice.
4 Yet their message reaches
all the earth,
and it travels
around the world.” Psalm 19:1-4
This is such a gorgeous time of year. We are
now officially in fall with bright sunshine, mild temperatures and beautiful blue skies. The sunsets have been marvelous! There are just a few trees with hints of color on some of their leaves. Don’t you love it when we have vibrant, rich leaf colors? Just the right circumstances have to come together for optimum leaf color. The largest part being the death of the leaves. Out of death, we see the beauty.
I dare say it’s much the same in our own lives. Maybe it is not physical death that brings forth beauty. There is another kind of death: death to self, meaning death to wanting to do things our own way. This effects everything in life—from how we spend our leisure time, our money, our thoughts; you name it. Jesus desires that we pick up the cross daily and follow him. By submitting everything to Christ’s lordship, we find beauty coming from allowing MY way to die. That’s how we experience resurrection life--when we allow things in our life to die.
Another way to think of this is our agenda and God’s agenda. I have a list in my planner each day of what I need to accomplish. Things come up. Someone’s in the hospital or the rehabilitation center. Whose agenda do I go with? I have to set mine aside. The divine interruptions of my day are ones I need to pay attention to. We must learn to look and listen for those times when we have to forgo our thoughts for how our day should unfold and lay them at the feet of Jesus.
God speaks to us through the wonders and beauty of nature and calls us to leave our worries, our desire to go our own ways and to follow Jesus. As our Lord said, If any want to become my followers, let them deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me. 24 For those who want to save their life will lose it, and those who lose their life for my sake will save it” (Luke 9:23).
As we sang together this past Sunday:
Take my life that I may be consecrated, Lord to thee;
Take my moments and my days; let them flow in ceaseless praise. (ELW 585).
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