harvest, miracles, & sharing abundance

“It’ll take a miracle for us to get through this!”

 “it’ll take a miracle”, usually said in such dismissive tones, often with a clear expectation that no such thing will occur. We dismiss possibilities out of hand. Before the possibility can ever take root!

But I wonder?

I’ve recently been reading The Hidden Life of Trees, by Peter Wohlleben. It’s one I recommend, if you are looking for some Autumn reading.

As I sit writing this looking at the majestic beeches outside my study window, with leaves slowly turning from green to lemon, I realise what an incredible miracle of nature each one of them is. 

How they co-exist and mutually support one another through their root systems. How they produce millions of nuts over their lifetimes, but that only one nut will grow to maturity. The vast ecosystems that each one of them supports and contains, of bugs, beetles, birds and other creatures, above and below ground.

The whole thing is miraculous. I sit here in wonder and ponder. What if we looked at it the idea of miracles the other way around?

Maybe, just maybe, considering that miracles can actually happen? I have never thought of myself as an optimist until recently. I’d probably have said I was ‘cynical and generally trying to avoid outright pessimism.

Yet now, in the midst of all the struggle and pain and chaos and uncertainty, I find myself every day choosing to see something to be grateful for and even to be joyful about.  And, this seemingly simple choice has changed everything.

So yes, it will take a miracle for us to get through the present crisis. It will take lots of miracles. Every day. But I have absolute faith that those miracles will occur – how, I have no idea. I am choosing to believe.

What they will be, will unfold in due course. We simply have to notice them and decide to be thankful.  And that’s the challenge for us all – to see, embrace and share our gratitude with each other.

As the mystery of life continues, and the earth produces its yearly abundance of crops in response to the farmer’s labour, I firmly believe we each will experience the miracles needed for each of us to cope in this season of uncertainty.

We celebrate Harvest Festival in our churches over the coming week.  This time of year, when the light shimmers through the copper leaves of the beech trees, is one I am coming to love.  The beauty of harvest reminds us to give thanks to God for the richness that the earth provides.

For harvest is not just the literal gathering-in of the crops and fruits in the fields. It is also a time to take stock of our lives, what we have achieved, and what we can take forward into the coming season. And, the falling coloured leaves reminding us how beautiful it can be to let go of the heavy things we carry to the love of God who cares deeply for each of us.

with peace and blessings,
Revd. Talisker