Autumnal Gratitude

You can listen to this week’s Devotional here

Author: Deborah Voss

As we move into Autumn, my favorite time of year, I reflect more than at any other time on our Earth. As she adorns such vivid colors, her perfume an earthy, spicy fragrance, I fall in love with her all over again on an elemental level. Walking with leaves crunching and breathing deeply of her scent, all the while immersed in the vibrancy of greens and golds and reds, I pray that we find the answers we need to save her, and in saving her, save ourselves. I pray for wisdom, and I am overwhelmed by how much we don’t know about her depths, her heights, her innermost being. And so, in praise of our Mother, I give you the words of my favorite poet, John O’Donohue from his book, “To Bless the Space Between Us”.

In Praise of the Earth

Let us bless
The imagination of the Earth.
That knew early the patience
To harness the mind of time,
Waited for the seas to warm,
Ready to welcome the emergence
Of things dreaming of voyaging
Among the stillness of land.

And how light knew to nurse
The growth until the face of the Earth
Brightened beneath a vision of color.

When the ages of ice came
And sealed the Earth inside
An endless coma of cold,
The heart of the Earth held hope,
Storing fragments of memory,
Ready for the return of the sun.

Let us thank the Earth
That offers ground for home
And holds our feet firm
To walk in space open
To infinite galaxies.

Let us salute the silence
And certainty of mountains:
Their sublime stillness,
Their dream-filled hearts.

The wonder of a garden
Trusting the first warmth of spring
Until its black infinity of cells
Becomes charged with dream;
Then the silent, slow nurture
Of the seed’s self, coaxing it
To trust the act of death.

The humility of the Earth
That transfigures all
That has fallen
Of outlived growth.

The kindness of the Earth,
Opening to receive
Our worn forms
Into the final stillness.

Let us ask forgiveness of the Earth
For all our sins against her:
For our violence and poisonings
Of her beauty.

Let us remember within us
The ancient clay,
Holding the memory of seasons,
The passion of the wind,
The fluency of water,
The warmth of fire,
The quiver-touch of the sun
And shadowed sureness of the moon.

That we may awaken,
To live to the full
The dream of the Earth
Who chose us to emerge
And incarnate its hidden night
In mind, spirit, and light.

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