The miracle of life
Psalm 104: 24-30 (NRSVA)
24 O Lord, how manifold are your works!
In wisdom you have made them all;
the earth is full of your creatures.
25 Yonder is the sea, great and wide,
creeping things innumerable are there,
living things both small and great.
26 There go the ships,
and Leviathan that you formed to sport in it.
27 These all look to you
to give them their food in due season;
28 when you give to them, they gather it up;
when you open your hand, they are filled with good things.
29 When you hide your face, they are dismayed;
when you take away their breath, they die
and return to their dust.
30 When you send forth your spirit, they are created;
and you renew the face of the ground.
If we ever want proof of the existence of God, could we look further than the miracle of life. From the birth of a baby, where no life or personality existed previously, to the construction of the tiniest creatures which still have all the organs and skeletal forms necessary for life, to the seemingly endless varieties of life which inhabit this world, a belief that this came about by accident seems utterly without merit. Out of his infinite imagination, from the well of his fathomless creativity, God created life in all its myriad forms. And yet, he handed over the stewardship of it to us! It is our job to manage the earth’s resources. It is our job to care for the life forms that it contains. And, sadly, we are failing. We are fishing the seas empty and poisoning the waters. We are burning the woods and contaminating the air. We are killing this beautiful planet.
During this time of lockdown, the earth has begun to breathe again. As stewards of God’s good gift, what can we do, after lockdown ends, to ensure that the benefits gained are not squandered once more at the altar of our convenience?
Creator God, thank you for the cornucopia of good things
which you have given to us for our enjoyment.
Forgive us that in our enjoyment of the riches available to us
we have neglected our responsibilities to husband those riches.
Father teach us once again to marvel at your creation.
Help us to discipline ourselves in the use of its resources.
May we be willing to sacrifice our easy lifestyles
for the sake of the health of the planet
and recover once again our role as stewards
in our care for your creation
rather than our exploitation of it. Amen.