God of all the Earth,
You are our Creator.
You are the mastermind behind the sun and the Earth
and the way we are tilted just a bit
to produce this beautiful cycle of warmth and cool,
of green and red and orange.
We drive up Dundas Street and see the fall colours splashed across the Giant’s Rib, our Niagara Escarpment, like a large scale Impressionist painting.
And it stuns us. Where does this palette come from?
Oh God, it seems like this week the colours have reached their saturation point – and we ask, can it really get better than this?
The sumacs are aflame with brilliant reds.
The burning bushes are literally burning and we know it’s holy ground.
The oranges are so bold and impertinent, it almost makes us blush.
The purples are deep and rich, like aged wine and ripened fruit.
The white birches with golden pools around their feet are a testimony of something other – something not from this world.
And God, we can’t help but wonder –
do these trees have something to tell us?
Against the cool grey of the limestone rock
and the muted gold of the corn fields,
these trees are proclaiming Your greatness.
You say in Your Word that the trees in the fields will clap their hands,
and the mountains and hills will burst into song
and that is easier to believe on days like these.
Oh God, sometimes Your beauty and Your extravagant, careless generosity
Why do trees have to be beautiful?
Why do they have to change colour?
But instead of why, we ask Who.
We know who’s behind this fall show of colours.
We know the Artist, the Engineer.
And so – we feast our eyes and in fact, all our senses,
on this outrageous gift of beauty and we drink it all in.
We drink deep and feel the pleasure right down to our toes,
because we know You.
And what makes us even more giddy,
is that we don’t know You
like we know Monet or Renoir.
We know about You, through Your Word,
but more than that,
we know You,
through Your Spirit.
You are not only generous in Your gifts to us,
You are generous in relationship with us.
And so we can call the mastermind of all this autumn beauty,
the One who holds us, tender and close.
We love You, Lord of this earth.
We worship You because You are great and generous and beautiful.
All praise and honour and glory to You alone.
Blessed be the name of the Lord.
In the name of the Giver of all good things, we pray