Devotional Thoughts Based on the Glory to God Hymnal
For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven: a time to be born and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted; a time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up; a time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; a time to throw away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing; a time to seek, and a time to lose; a time to keep and a time to throw away; a time to tear, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak; a time to love, and a time to hate; a time for war, and a time for peace What gain have the workers from their toil? I have seen the business that God has given everyone to be busy with. He has made everything suitable for its time; moreover he has put a sense of past and future in their minds, yet they cannot find out what God has done from the beginning to the end. I know that there is nothing better for them than to be happy and enjoy themselves as long as they live; moreover, it is God’s good gift that all should eat and drink and take pleasure in their toil.
The garden areas around my house are looking “winter worn,” which describes some brown and wilted stems and leaves while still producing flowers to add color to the landscape. Some have amazed me to produce so many blossoms with so little care. The azaleas and camellias are blooming, but they would have produced more flowers if they had gotten periodic fertilizing. The orchids I was given and the anthuriums I bought seem to be doing quite well. It is time to bag leaves that have fallen from my own and neighbors’ oak trees. After that chore is done it will be time to plant some more flowers. I enjoy gardening, but I don’t have as much time as I would like, and it does take time to “to plant and to pluck up what has been planted.
All Things Bright and Beautiful is in my Top Ten List of favorite hymns. Mrs. Cecil Frances Alexander wrote this hymn to assist children in learning portions of the Apostles’ Creed. This hymn was to teach them, “I believe in God the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth.” The sections of the refrain served as titles of the James Herriot series of novels, based on the experiences of a country veterinarian living and working in the Yorkshire Dales before and after World War II. Over the years I have greatly enjoyed the novels and the television program, All Creatures Great and Small.
Creator God, we thank You for “all things bright and beautiful, all creatures great and small and all things wise and wonderful.” It is You, O Lord, who made them all. We thank You, Lord that You “gave us eyes to see them, and lips that we might tell, how great is God Almighty, who has made all things well.” In Christ’s name, we pray. Amen.