speaking english and perfect love

“Do you speak English?”

— The words we were asked the other day in the T station by a young man trying to get directions to a location in East Boston, further reinforcing that we are definitely not in Abilene anymore. Oh, and we answered the guy, “Sí.”


…Then the crowds spread out their coats on the road ahead of Jesus. As they reached the place where the road started down from the Mount of Olives, all of his followers began to shout and sing as they walked along, praising God for all the wonderful miracles they had seen.

“Bless the King who comes in the name of the Lord!
Peace in heaven
and glory in highest heaven!”
But some of the Pharisees among the crowd said, “Teacher, rebuke your followers for saying things like that!”

He replied, “If they kept quiet, the stones along the road would burst into cheers!” (Luke 19:36-40)

The heavens tell of the glory of God.
The skies display his marvelous craftsmanship.

Day after day they continue to speak;
night after night they make him known.

They speak without a sound or a word;
their voice is silent in the skies;

yet their message has gone out to all the earth,
and their words to all the world.
The sun lives in the heavens
where God placed it.

It bursts forth like a radiant bridegroom
after his wedding.
It rejoices like a great athlete
eager to run the race.

The sun rises at one end of the heavens
and follows its course to the other end.
Nothing can hide from its heat. (Psalm 19:1-6)

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about nature. Scripture tells us that nature glorifies God. In fact, scripture tells us that nature will glorify God even when we will not. I have wondered if there is any more perfect love for the Creator than that from the birds…the trees…the rocks. Then, I came to the following passage in my regular bathroom read, Thoughts in Solitude by Thomas Merton:

Let this be my only consolation, that wherever I am You, my Lord, are loved and praised.

The trees indeed love You without knowing You. The tiger lilies and corn flowers are there, proclaiming that they love You, without being aware of Your presence. The beautiful dark clouds ride slowly across the sky musing on You like children who do not know what they are dreaming of, as they play.

But in the midst of them all, I know you, and I know of your presence. In them and in me I know of the love which they do not know, and, what is greater, I am abashed by the presence of Your love which they do not know, and, what is greater, I am abashed by the presence of Your love in me. O Kind and terrible love, which You have given me, and which could never be in my heart if You did not love me! For in the midst of these beings which have never offended You, I am loved by You, and it would seem most of all as one who has offended You. I am seen by You under the sky, and my offences have been forgotten by You — but I have not forgotten them…

Something to think about, for sure. How could we — humans — refuse to praise our Creator when all of nature praises Him unceasingly? How could we worry about where food…clothes…jobs will come from when the birds and flowers exist in perfect trust of their Father?


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