My father nearly died a few weeks ago and is stable now only because medical technology has advanced so far in the last few years. As I write, our family is waiting to hear what is next. We do not know what the future holds for him or for us.
That is, I suppose, the way that it always is. We think we know what is going to happen next week, next month, next year. But we don't, do we? I know exactly as much about the future now as I did last month, before his diagnosis—which is to say, nothing.
This is my father's world. My father, who taught me almost everything that I know about life, poetry, art and music, good wine, the beauty of the morning light. My father, who taught me to see the world with a sense of awe and wonder.
This is my Father's world. The One who gave me such a father, and who sustains him and me and all of our loved ones through this life of waiting, of soon and not yet. This is my Father's world; why should my heart be sad? The Lord is king, let heaven ring.
Father God, you give us everything that we need for this life. You provide us with parents and teachers to love us and teach us love. You decorate the world in the beauty of nature and give us the music of the spheres and the carols of the birds as our soundtrack. Grant us eyes that see you shine, ears that hear your feet pass, and hearts vulnerable to wonder at all that you have created. Amen.
"This is My Father's World," ELW 824
1 This is my Father's world, and to my list'ning ears
all nature sings, and round me rings the music of the spheres.
This is my Father's world; I rest me in the thought
of rocks and trees, of skies and seas; his hand the wonders wrought.
2 This is my Father's world; the birds their carols raise;
the morning light, the lily white, declare their maker's praise.
This is my Father's world; he shines in all that's fair.
In the rustling crass I hear him pass; he speaks to me ev'rywhere.
3 This is my Father's world; oh let me not forget
that, though the wrong seems oft so strong, God is the ruler yet.
This is my Father's world; why should my heart be sad?
The Lord is king, let heaven ring; God reigns, let earth be glad!
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