In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was without form and void, and darkness was over the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters. And God said, “Let there be light”, and there was light. And God saw that the light was good. And God separated the light from the darkness. God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And there was evening and there was morning, the first day. (Genesis 1:1-5)
O Lord, how manifold are your works! In wisdom have you made them all; the earth is full of your creatures. Here is the sea, great and wide, which teems with creatures innumerable, living things both small and great. (Psalm 104:24-25)
He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him. And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together. (1 Colossians 1:15-17)
The first line of a book is very important. It can be enough to make you decide if you wish to read the book or not. Some first lines are very famous, and for those who enjoy quizzing, there is an expectation that even if you have not read the book itself, you will know the first line to many of those referred to as classics. On Sunday morning, as Rob and I drove over to Hannington for the service there, I was reminded of one such line. It comes from Jane Eyre, a book I have read more than once, and as the rain poured down around us I remembered the line “There was no possibility of taking a walk that day.” This was a shame as I had been hoping for a walk later in the day. However, by the afternoon, I was delighted to see the sun come out and an improvement in the weather that I had not been expecting.
So Rob and I put on our raincoats (we weren’t that confident of it staying dry) and headed out of the village. As we walked along Mill Lane I was struck by the beauty of the trees and hedges that surrounded the fields. They were full of the various colours of autumn; there were reds and yellows, browns and oranges, as well as the greens of those that would be keeping their leaves. The tapestry of colours was beautiful.
As I considered the beauty of the sight in front of me, two different thoughts came to mind. The first was how the beauty of the scene was enhanced by its very transience; next week it will not look the same, the colours of autumn are only fleeting and we have to enjoy them when we can or else we will miss out. The second was how much more beautiful the scene was because of the variety of different trees and shrubs that I could see. If they had all been exactly the same type and colour, then the effect would have been less dramatic, it was the mix of colours all intermingling with each other that made it look so lovely.
The first line of the bible reminds us that in the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. The chapter continues to tell us how God created everything, a theme that is echoed throughout the bible. He created each one of us. Our time on earth is fleeting and while we are here, we need to take time to appreciate what God has created for us. Also, we need to notice and enjoy the diversity of God’s creation. Each one of us is different, it would not be anywhere near as interesting if we were all the same. So, as we see the wonders of the colours of this season, let us praise God for all that he has made and rejoice in the diversity of each other.
Father God, may we never take for granted the wonder of your creation.