PSALM OF THE JOURNEY
It was a car journey that did it. So much of the time we are bombarded with messages about how terrible the world is - traffic and roads, the pollution and the destruction. We easily get to believe the worst. Looking out of the car, on a beautiful day, however, made me think more about how lovely the world is, including those bits of creation that are man-made
- The motorway stretches out in front of me:
I see through the windows the distant hills.
- It's your creation, God, that extends in every direction:
my world fits into your landscape.
- The hills surround me on every side:
they make me feel safe and protected,
- they stand sure and unchanging:
we may try to alter them, but we don't entirely succeed!
- In the same way, you are my protector:
firm and unchanging is your presence about me,
- for your love never fails:
you hold me always secure however far I travel.
- The fields look green and pleasant on either side:
your creation is very good.
- While your sun shines around us, this is the place to be:
the country is bright and beautiful.
- It looks like my dream of delight:
the farm beside the copse, the church below the hill;
- or is that only my fantasy and ideal:
our community's nostalgia for days we never knew?
- The countryside brings me closer to you:
your goodness is clear in the balance of nature;
- for your beauty surrounds me every day:
when I recognise your presence everything is perfect.
- The roadway climbs through the mountains:
there is snow in the gullies in spite of the sunshine.
- The moorland reaches as far as eye can see:
up to the skyline there's nothing, no sign of habitation.
- This view gives me a feeling of freedom:
the open country around me helps me be open to you,
- as Moses found you on the sacred mountain:
so your presence is clear to me in the rolling hills.
- When you are with me, I'm an open landscape:
relaxing makes me aware of your strengthening Spirit,
- you are freedom for me to be as I really am:
this countryside is like the wideness of your gracious love.
- Now I'm completely engulfed by dark satanic mills:
the world of human creation becomes the total environment.
- Some people say it was you who made the country:
and your creation was spoilt by the work of humanity!
- Yet there is beauty here in this curving bridge:
buildings are signs of your inspiration,
- the road by which I travel has its own line and feature:
design and structure are symbols of your guiding hand.
- You are close to me also in the teeming city:
there are so many people and you are friend of all.
- Everywhere I look, there are you:
in everything that surrounds me your presence is shining out.