St Mary’s Church Coddenham

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From the Rectory – Nature Praises

by | Jan 20, 2022 | Coddenham Church

Coddenham landscape with large winter tree in frost

What a glorious morning.  As the dawning light slowly brightened, it revealed a frost-whitened landscape; the field beyond our garden shrouded in a low mist topped with the shadowy outline of the tree-line beyond.  Later, as the wintry sun climbed a little, the mist passed and frosty roofs were briefly tinged golden, before the frost slowly melted.  Outside the window, birdsong accompanied the changing scene.  I was being treated to a free son et lumiere – in daylight.

The psalmist tells us that ‘The heavens are telling the glory of God, and the firmament proclaims his handiwork’.  Furthermore, In the heavens, God has made a home for the sun, ….  who rejoices as a champion athlete to run his race.[1]  God’s creative handiwork is not restricted to the heavens.  St John, in words so recently read and re-read in carol services across the land, reminds us that ‘in the beginning was the Word, .. The Word was God and all things came into being through him[2]This morning’s glorious display was nature praising nature’s creator.

It is mid-January, and here in the depth of winter our world is full of uncertainty.  This is all so very unsettling.  Winter weather and short daylight hours only add to a seasonal air of gloom.  Last Monday, I hear, has been dubbed ‘blue’; apparently a travel company ploy to encourage holiday bookings.  Saturday was dull, damp, uninviting; just the weather to encourage the blues.  Today we were treated to a moment of great beauty.  This moment, this beauty is a free gift; a show staged by the natural world, an expression of exuberant joy in its creator.  No need to travel, just wrap up warm and step outside.

Enjoying this morning’s display, I am reminded that I am as much a part of nature, as much God’s handiwork, as the birds who sing, the sun-drenched frost crystals, the swirling mists.  As I go about my business I am called not just to enjoy this natural gift of praise, but to be part of it.  Nature is not mine to do with as I will.  We are all called as partners in the eternal dance of praise to our creator.  This morning I enjoyed looking on as the world around me praised its’ creator; I wonder, what might that world around me think, as it looks on me?

Rev Philip  Payne                                                Epiphany Season – January 16th

The Notice Sheet for 23rd January can be found here


[1] Extracts from Ps 19, some paraphrased.

[2] Jn 1:1,3 extracts


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