Thursday, September 07, 2006

This Is My Father's World

Kairos Journal offers this "quick take" on the life and death of Steve Irwin:

"The death of the conservationist Steve Irwin is widely reported in the world media. Irwin was a larger than life and controversial character who for many years championed the cause of crocodiles in Australia. Along with his wife Terri he founded “Australia Zoo” in Queensland, and such was their devotion to the cause of endangered species that they even went in search of crocodiles on their honeymoon.

One aspect of Irwin’s life stands out. He was unashamedly enthusiastic about the wonders of the natural world. Children adored him because he showed them what it might mean to love animals whether great or small. The sight of Irwin wrestling a mammoth crocodile or running in the desert to catch a scorpion was almost guaranteed to implant in children a playful delight in living beings. Tragically there is no indication that Irwin was a Christian, indeed, he and his wife welcomed their children into the world with Buddhist ceremonies. Yet his life is one long rebuke to Christians who take little delight in their Father’s world. If a man could love the creation this much and not know the Creator—how much more should those who love God take delight in the work of His hands?"

This is my Father’s world, and to my listening 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.

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 grass I hear Him pass;
He speaks to me everywhere.

This is my Father’s world. O let me ne’er forget
That though the wrong seems oft so strong, God is the ruler yet.
This is my Father’s world: the battle is not done:
Jesus Who died shall be satisfied,
And earth and Heav’n be one.

This is my Father’s world, dreaming, I see His face.
I open my eyes, and in glad surprise cry, “The Lord is in this place.”
This is my Father’s world, from the shining courts above,
The Beloved One, His Only Son,
Came—a pledge of deathless love.

This is my Father’s world, should my heart be ever sad?
The Lord is King—let the heavens ring. God reigns—let the earth be glad.
This is my Father’s world. Now closer to Heaven bound,
For dear to God is the earth Christ trod.
No place but is holy ground.

This is my Father’s world. I walk a desert lone.
In a bush ablaze to my wondering gaze God makes His glory known.
This is my Father’s world, a wanderer I may roam
Whate’er my lot, it matters not,
My heart is still at home.

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