The Hillsides Blossom with Joy
The grasslands of the wilderness become a lush pasture, and the hillsides blossom with joy.
As I reflect on Psalm 65:12, I remember a trip my family and I made to the Willow City Loop last year. This short road near Fredericksburg, Texas, passes through fields that, in some seasons, are filled with wildflowers. Right now, Texas is in an extreme drought. Amazingly, there have been some wildflowers, but nothing like last year, where the hillsides did indeed “blossom with joy” (65:12). (To see some photos of the Willow City Loop flowers last year, check out this link.)
Even though we live in a world that is marred by sin, even though creation now “groans” with longing for the new creation still to come (Rom. 8:22), the goodness and beauty of God’s perfect creation shines through. In the lavish wildflowers of a spring meadow, in the cool breeze of an early autumn evening, or in the pounding waves of an isolated beach, we glimpse God’s grandeur, his artistic vision.
Those who worship nature rightly delight in the glory of the world, but wrongly worship the creation rather than the Creator. The natural world is indeed glorious and worthy of praise. Yet, it is meant to point us to the one whose glory immeasurably exceeds that of this world, the creator who is worthy of endless praise.
QUESTIONS FOR FURTHER REFLECTION: What aspects of the natural world lift your heart to praise God? Why? Where have you experienced the beauty of God’s creation in ways that help you to worship?
PRAYER: Mighty God, you are the creator of all things. This world in all of its majesty and beauty is your work of art. And though our sin has disfigured your masterpiece, even so the grandeur of your creation shines through. It reminds us of who you are and calls us to worship you.
Thank you, dear Lord, for the gift of creation. Thank you for making us so that, like yourself, we might perceive and delight in beauty. Thank you for the lush pastures of the wilderness and the hillsides that blossom with joy.
All praise be to you, God our Creator, for the world you have made. How I look forward to seeing this world when it is fully renewed in the age to come! But, in the meanwhile, may I enjoy the goodness of creation, and may it turn my heart to you. Amen.