The final section of this hymn of praise draws upon images of God as not just Creator, but also caretaker of the earth. God tends to each stage of the growing process, watering the earth deeply so the seeds can germinate, softening the crust so they can sprout. In verse 11, we find reference to God’s constant presence in creation, creating “wagon tracks” from repeated travel over time.
God is a God who cares for all of creation – for the people who are like us and for the people that are not. It is an act of thanksgiving and praise to embrace all people as one of our own, acknowledging that they are one of God’s own. It is an act of thanksgiving and praise to work alongside God in the tilling and planting, and then trusting God to provide the rain, the snow, and the sun at the right times. It is an act of thanksgiving and praise to celebrate the end of harvest whether it was a lean year or plentiful, knowing that God is already working on next year’s crop. God answers prayer, God forgives, God creates, and God provides. How else could we respond but with praise and thanksgiving?
Today, take a few moments to notice the color of the changing leaves, to feel the crisp air on your face, and to see the slanting rays of the sun in the evening. Offer thanks to God.