I live out in the middle of nowhere. It’s a great transition from the urban environment that I usually inhabit when I’m up in Cambridge–it’s quiet, it’s peaceful, it’s simple. But, more than anything, it is so beautiful here. Everything is blooming, our first vegetables and fruits for the year are starting to come in, and the air is laced with the sweet scent of drying grass, which the farms will begin to bale up and put in storage until the winter in a day or two.
I’ve taken to running at night because the unfortunate thing about summer here is that heat and humidity comes with the seasonal abundance. But it’s a great way to end the day, as I get to enjoy the “nightlife,” if you will. As the sun sets and the stars appear, the ground begins to resemble the sky as the fields almost literally sparkle with fireflies. The moon is so bright that I can see my shadow (and my dog, who usually tags along and, without fail, is up to no good).
As I observe all this, I can’t help but be amazed at the sheer beauty of God’s creation. Man could never come close to creating the kind of intricate workings that make our world so beautiful. Everything bears the mark of God, and God has provided for us and all earthly creatures in such a way that we can rest assured that we will always have the resources to survive, even thrive.
“Then God said, I’ve given you every sort of seed-bearing plant on Earth, and every kind of fruit bearing tree, given them to you for food. To all animals and all birds, everything that moves and breathes, I give whatever grows out of the ground for food” (Genesis 1:29-30).
In a world of genetically altered plants, processed food, and food we generally can’t figure out where it came from, it’s easy to forget that God has provided everything we could ever need to care for ourselves. I think we are mistrustful of God’s creations, and unfortunately so; as more and more evidence comes out about some of the harmful chemicals we put on our skin and in our food, the more I’ve come to realize that we need to get back in touch with what God designed, which is perfect, and unlikely to harm us if we only eat the right foods and make use of His creation and the role He created for us within it.
One of my favorite things in our garden this year is the strawberries. Not only are they positively sweet and delicious straight off the plant, but they have taught me a lesson that led me back to the verse from Genesis. A single strawberry contains most of the nutrients we need to survive–and it also has the potential to generate many, many more plants from that one single strawberry. It reminds me that God has given us more than just what we need to subsist. He has given generously, and He has given us the chance to not only use, but also enjoy, His creation.
We need to face the facts: nothing we create will ever compare to the beauty of a single strawberry, or even a pesky weed that you pull out of the garden. Not only are God’s creations complex in and of themselves, but they are complex in the way they fit into the “grander scheme of things.” Yes, God has given us the power to create and do amazing things, but we will never even come close to the beautiful simplicity of a single strawberry. We need to trust God that He will provide; He has already given us more than we could ever need, as long as we know to use it.