Dear All,

 

Time is passing so quickly: the last Saturday in September.  I expect the events of the last couple of weeks have given you much to reflect on – they certainly have done for me.

 

If you have any more ‘space’ for further reflection here are some things that focus on ‘Harvest’.  It is the weekend where many churches have their Harvest Festivals though I think most harvesting was finished a few weeks ago.  Thanksgiving is very much part of harvest but so too increasingly are questions about how we use our land & whether it is in a way that will allow the land to regenerate & still be producing a good harvest for generations to come.  Also, harvest brings with it questions about food across the globe.  Is our good harvest & all we enjoy in the way of food contributing to the lack of food in poorer countries?  Are we doing what we can to combat climate change?  The effects of climate change may feel very real to us in Europe especially following the July extreme heat but the effects are even more devastating for developing countries & their people.  A lot to think about as well as to celebrate.

 

Our blessing today: the ‘Clare Blessing’ by Rutter.  Let’s pray it for all who work on the land & all who struggle to make enough from their land to feed their families.

 

Love to you all

 

Creator God, breathing your own life into our being, you give us the gift of life. You placed us on this earth with its flowers and fruits, minerals and waters, living creatures of grace and beauty. At harvest time the earth reaches the peak of its fruitfulness. It depends on us to praise you by harvesting its goods in ways which ensure there will be harvests in the future.

You gave us the care of the earth.

Today you ask us: “Where are you? What have you done?”

 

 

Lord of the Harvest

who has given us so much;

help us to be generous like you,

that the world may know your goodness & blessing.

And may the blessing of God

Maker, Son, and Holy Spirit,

remain on us,

and be made known through us,

now & always.  Amen.

 

 

Harvest wrappings.

God hides his living seeds

in rosy apples, ripening pears

and juicy oranges;

in red tomatoes, rounded swedes

and long, green dangling runner beans.

God sends the sun and rain in bouts,

and vines with luscious grapes are decked

while fields yield broccoli and sprouts.

 

As harvest-time returns,

the varied ways in which God wraps

life-giving seeds

make a colourful display

of fruit & flowers of every kind;

beauty of pattern and design.

This is a feast for all to share,

filling our hearts with gratitude

for God’s incessant love and care.

 

So when, in many lands,

we eat the fruit and sow the seeds

in partnership with God,

he feeds us with delicious food,

renewing body, mind and soul,

and blesses us in many ways.

Then we, in glad responsive love,

will give him joyful thanks and praise.

 

Beryl Chatfield

 

 

Lord,

isn’t your creation wasteful?

Fruits never equal

the seedlings abundance.

Springs scatter water.

The sun gives out

enormous light.

May your bounty teach me

greatness of heart.

Seeing you a prodigal

and open-handed giver,

let me give unstintingly……

like God’s own.

 

Helder Camara

 

 

Colour in the Wheat    

Like liquid gold the wheat field lies,
A marvel of yellow and russet and green,
That ripples and runs, that floats and flies,
With the subtle shadows, the change, the sheen,
That play in the golden hair of a girl,—
A ripple of amber—a flare
Of light sweeping after—a curl
In the hollows like swirling feet
Of fairy waltzers, the colours run
To the western sun
Through the deeps of the ripening wheat.

 

Hamlin Garland