Saturday, October 20, 2012

Bless the Lord

Sunday, October 20, 2012
Proper B24
Psalm 104
Props: Photos or slides of natural beauty

The world is a pretty amazing place, when you think about it.  There are so many different kinds of landscapes, like mountains that reach way high into the sky, and deep valleys that plunge deep into the earth.  There are vast oceans dotted with tiny islands, damp rain forests and dry deserts, flat plains with rich soil, mucky swamps and sandy beaches.

There are so many different kinds of plants in the world, too--from towering redwood trees to plants so small it takes a microscope to see them.  There are colorful flowers of every shape and size, straight grasses, round bushes, spreading trees and creeping ground covers.  There are splendid orchids that need special care to flower, and weeds like dandelions that will grow just about anywhere. 

There are so many different kinds of animals in the world!  Dogs and cats.  Fish and birds.  African animals like lions and zebras, giraffes, meerkats and an animal called the naked mole rat!  There are Australian animals like kangaroos, koala bears, rainbow lorikeets, dingo dogs and wombats.  In Asia there are animals like the Asia elephant, blow fish, cobra snakes, giant pandas and yaks.  Central American animals include anaconda snakes, beautiful, blue morpho butterflies, toucan birds, pumas, tarantulas and tree frogs.  I think you get the idea.  There are more different kinds of animals in the world than I would ever be able to count! 

A person doesn't have to be out in the country or the wilderness to see natural wonders, either.  You can see bits of nature in even the most crowded city.  You might go to a park and play on the grass or rest under the shade of a tree.  You might see a dandelion or other plant growing through a crack in the sidewalk.  You can see hawks flying around the tall buildings of New York City, as well as pigeons and other birds.

Natural beauty is everywhere, including in the person sitting next to you.  You are a wonder of nature yourself!  For the beauty of nature all around us, we give thanks to God, the Creator.  It is God who gives us these gifts of land, sea, plant, animal and people.  Thanks be to God!

As a way of thanking God for the gift of Creation, I want you to think about your favorite type of animal--adults and children--are you thinking of an animal?  OK, now on the count of three, I want us all to say together, "Thank-you, God, for..." and then make the sound your favorite animal makes, OK?  One, two, three!  "Thank-you, God, for........"  AMEN!

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