‘The grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of our God endures forever.’ – Isaiah 40.8From Toni Clark:
I love the Autumn, there is nothing better than a crisp cold sunny day around this time of year when the sky is clear and bright and the trees still have most of their leaves. This time last year I went to Kew Gardens and it was just stunning. I love all the colours of the trees as the leaves turn from shades of green to a mass of golds, browns and reds – a true wonder of God’s creation, a final flourish of colour before the darkness of winter comes along. In the coming days and weeks the trees will lose their leaves to stand bare once more, the flowers will die off, the fields all harvested and empty of crops and the world will become a darker, less colourful place for a few months.
This verse in Isaiah (and repeated in 1 Peter 1 v24-25) is, on the face of it, a reminder of Autumn – the grass withers and the flowers fall – but when you look at the verse before, the writer says “surely the people are grass”. As Benjamin Franklin famously said “in this world, nothing is certain except death and taxes”, and one day we will wither and fall. We will not be here forever, but the incredible thing is that God’s Word will be, his Word endures forever. God is the same yesterday, today and tomorrow – it is his Word that is true, it is his Word that we can trust in the world of uncertainty around us. When we read our Bibles, we can gain strength to face any challenges – we read God’s promise that he is with us always, and are reminded about Jesus and how his death on the cross for our sins will give us eternal life.
So when you are out for a walk this Autumn, give thanks to God, for the wonder and beauty of creation at this time, marvel at the incredible colours as the world prepares for its winter sleep. But also give thanks for God’s Word that sustains us always. Not just when the sun is shining and all is well in the world but even more so in the darkness of winter when life can feel hard and challenging, or in the darkness of our lives when we face hardships, uncertainty, or are anxious about what may happen with the pandemic, with our jobs, or with our families. In those times, remember that God’s Word endures forever, God is with us forever – turn to him for comfort and hope.