This fall I became enamored with clouds to the point that I am planning to use the 100+ pictures I have taken of them in the last two months to create a book filled with meditations. I often walk out of my house these days or drive away and my eyes are filled with tears at the beauty in the sky. I have “seen” the clouds all my life, but it is like I never really looked at them before. I think Jesus is telling me that there is a difference between just noticing something and really seeing it in all its artistry and glory. Of course here he is talking about His teachings.
The clouds are only one example in the natural world of God’s artistry and creativity. Take the trees. There are more than 60,000 species of trees on this planet. And those trees that grow in a natural forest on this planet have ways of communicating about diseases and pests through the fungus on the ground and their own fluids that flow through the trees.
And animals. “There are approximately 1.2 million known species of animals, but scientists estimate there are closer to 8.7 million species on earth.”
The entire system that God designed and then created is an interdependent system that produces enough food for each species, making us dependent on all the species for our sustenance, just as they all are dependent on us. Clouds, plants, animals including humans…when I think of the Mind that created all these species that can evolve and adapt to changing circumstances and yet are dependent on each other for sustenance and life itself, I am awed by the incredible diversity of the system God designed. He is the ultimate Artist.
I find such joy in the natural world, particularly in the trees, birds and now the clouds. They sustain me through the ups and downs of life. I am committed above all to the preservation of our planet and all the forms of life on it. I have long been a recycler, and I own a hybrid car which gets some 50+ miles to the gallon of gas. Now I am looking at the food I purchase and how it is produced. I am making the choice to go organic so I do not consume tons of pesticide every year in what I eat. I am opting out of as much plastic as I can. I want my nine grandchildren ages 21 years to 2 months to have a planet that will sustain them, too.
I pray for our planet and the survival of all its species. We humans were given dominion over this huge variety of plants and animals, but we have neglected the good of all in our materialistic/overblown needs. We need to scale back our consumption, our greed, our indifference, and allow the planet to be healed of what has caused our planet to overheat and to become less friendly to all these species, including human beings. Surely, God did not intend us to be so oblivious of all human needs and those of all the other plant and animal species. We need to roll back the clock on the worst of our offenses, so that life here can heal.
We need to live in gratitude for this beautiful planet and all that God designed and created here. We need to acknowledge what the Creator would ask of us at this moment in time. Would He want us to continue our profligate ways? Would He want us to ignore the temperatures and seas rising, so that we can still blindly go about our business here? Would God desire us to deny the poverty and enslavement and immigration that is undermining so much of our brothers-and-sisters throughout the world?
God designed this world as an interdependent system in which we depend on all the plants and animals and they on us. I see God’s kingdom as the place where everyone is part of a community, where God created human beings all in His image, so that to enter the kingdom of God is to acknowledge God’s love for each and every human being, no matter their race or education or profession or religion or anything else about them. This is the time to show how committed we are to God’s plan for our species, to love and forgive, to have mercy on all our brothers and sisters here on earth. And, by extension, we are to love and protect all the species of plants and animals on which we depend. That love would put us in God’s kingdom right now.
- I am giving away a 10-week journaling guide to Jesus’s Two Great Commandments. If you are interested, email me at email@example.com and I will send it to you, free of charge.
- My latest book, Called to Help the Poor and Needy, is now in bookstores and on line. It’s about the more than 2,000 verses in the Bible which detail God’s instructions for caring for those in need.
Questions to ponder over the week: How much do I appreciate God’s artistry in creating this planet and all its plants and animals? How grateful am I for the beautiful home He has given me? What do I depend on to keep me from being anxious in this pandemic which seems endless?
Blessing for the week: May we be the people of God who live in gratitude, awed by the beauty of our planet. May we depend on God for all that we need and desire.
See more blog posts and offerings at patsaidadams.com.
Check out my other website, deepeningyourfaith.com for information about spiritual practices and more writings about the spiritual life. New posts every month. 12.20.21’s is entitled “Sacred Fire.” Sign up to receive these as monthly emails at the website.
 Matthew 13:14, 15
 Genesis 1:26-27