If we contemplate the creation, we will learn much about our relationship to God, to creation, and to our own being. We all too often live lives of disconnection, which leave us feeling untethered from everything that matters: God, the earth, and even ourselves. If we wish to find balance, stability, and grow solid roots that dig deep, and allow our upraised branches to reach high into the heavens, then we must begin to practice the contemplation of creation.
Be Like the Birds: Contemplation of Creation
“Be like the birds!” Elder Thaddeus commanded. “They are always singing praises to the Lord. ” Elder Thaddeus loved the birds. He could often be seen lying on the ground with birds hopping onto his chest, eating breadcrumbs from his beard. He loved all living creatures but had a special fondness for birds. As the end of his life drew near, many wild animals came to Elder Thaddeus to pay their respects. Many species of birds flocked together and came to bid farewell to the elder who had loved them so much and had always spoken about them with great tenderness:
“They are grateful to God. Not so us men. The birds are always singing praises to the Lord. They begin their song early, at three o’clock in the morning, and don’t stop until nine. At nine they calm down a little bit—it’s only then that they go looking for food to feed their young. Then they start singing again. Nobody tells them to sing—they just do. And what about us? We’re always frowning, always pouting; we don’t feel like singing or doing anything else. We should follow the example of the birds. They’re always joyful whereas we’re always bothered by something. What is it that bothers us? Nothing, really…. Isn’t that right?”
The Kinship of all Creation and the Contemplation of Creation
Man has a special kinship with all animals; after all, man and animals are made from the same earth. This is why so many people develop such great love for animals. We are made of the same substance, dwell in the same place, are nourished by the same earth, and are loved by the same God. Every living creature on earth has a sacred and divine purpose. God has placed each and every creature on the earth for a reason: to love, and to be loved, but also to teach. There is much we can learn from creation when we take the time to relate to her in contemplation. Elder Thaddeus learned much from his relationship with wild birds; he learned of the joy that all creatures should live with, in particular the joy of singing praises to God. I too have often sensed that the early morning song that birds sing, is a hymn of praise to the Creator. I then ask myself, ‘what if we too began each day with a hymn of praise to God, and ended each day with a song of thanksgiving? Would we too experience the same joy with which our fellow birds live?’ I dare answer a resounding yes.
God is Everywhere Present and Fillest All Things
I have learned much from my two pigs as well, and from the trees that I sit under, and embrace. But I have much more to learn. When we contemplate creation, we begin to see that God is everywhere; He isn’t up there somewhere, but here, among us, filling all things with His energy. Contemplation of creation brings us to God, and God sends us back to creation. When we contemplate creation we learn about God, and see Him more freely. When we see Him in such a manner, we begin to know Him. In turn, as we come to see and know God, He seeds us back to creation with new eyes and new understanding. This action becomes a circle of love, a dance between earth and Spirit. God has given us all that we need to choreograph this sacred dance. All that is left for us to do, is to dance, to take creation by the hand and dance with her in sacred communion with our Creator.
Join us as we strive to create a more peaceful world as we seek to meet the Creator, through the creation. Strive with us to develop an authentic Trinitarian communion, as we honor our God, demonstrate love to one another, and show compassion upon all of nature.
Want to discover how you can learn more about yourself and about God by contemplating the creation? Then join us on one of our Holy Wild Gatherings.
Rewild Church meets in Pittstown, NJ and in various other locations throughout Hunterdon County New Jersey.
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Christian Ecology, Theology, and Holistic Herbalism
Pittstown, NJ (Hunterdon County New Jersey)