A Pastor’s Ponderings
By Rev. Pete Hyde
He stands before a large, empty, stark, white canvas with paints and brushes at the ready. It is time to create. With the skill of a master artist, he begins to paint. He starts with a pure blue and brushes the top of the canvas. He smiles as if gaining strength and inspiration from the first few brush strokes. With a sense of mission he changes brushes and colors and is now fully immersed in His task. Hues of reds, yellows, oranges, browns and greens begin to fill the canvas with so much color it would take the breath away of all who would see. Grays and browns and whites break the rainbow of colors and add contrast and a depth of beauty that only a master could portray. Across the azure blue he swept strands of grey and white. He stepped back for a moment and looked upon his creation. It seemed the painting went on forever and flowed from the edges of the canvas and filled his entire field of vision. But something was missing. Even though it was brilliant, it was just a lifeless canvas. Yes, it was pretty and inspiring, but it was a flat picture. Something else was needed.
He raised His hand and spoke life into the canvas. The grey strands of clouds streaked across the pure, blue sky driven by a crisp north wind. The red, yellows, oranges, greens and browns came to life as the wind rustled through the leaves. The sun, breaking through the blotchy clouds, made the colors in the valley contrast between subdued shadows and brilliant exclamation points of color. The grey, black and white cliffs towering hundreds of feet above the valley floor framed each section of color. A lull in the wind allowed the sounds of the river below to echo through valley. The rain of the day before brought forth the smells of fallen leaves. The smell of smoke from a fireplace somewhere lingered in the air and added to the magic of the scene.
The couple stood on the overlook. Little was said. Pictures were taken. The moments and company of each other and presence of the Master Artist was all that was needed. As they drove the winding roads, the leaves of infinite color swirled around them. With each break in the tree line the beauty of the living canvas brought new images and inspiration. “This is the day the Lord has made, let us rejoice and be glad in it!!”
Psalm 104:31-34 says: “May the glory of the Lord endure forever; may the Lord rejoice in his works, who looks on the earth and it trembles, who touches the mountains and they smoke! I will sing to the Lord as long as I live. I will sing praise to my God while I have being. May my meditation be pleasing to him for I rejoice in the Lord.”
Rev. J. Pete Hyde is Senior Pastor of the Santa Rosa Beach Community Church. He can be reached at 850-267-2599 or www.srbcc.com.