For the Beauty of…Horicon Marsh

 

For the beauty of the earth,

For the beauty of the skies,

For the Love which from our birth

Over and around us lies:

Christ, our God, to Thee we raise

This our Sacrifice of Praise.

 

Original text from 1864 of Folliott S. Pierpoint’s hymn For the Beauty of the Earth

When I go to be with the Lord I want this Eucharistic hymn, my favorite hymn, sung at my passing. I want to raise a sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving to the King of Heaven and earth.

There is much to give thanks for…

Horicon Marsh 7:30 AM ©Ann Johnson Kingdom Venturers

Horicon Marsh 7:30 AM
©Ann Johnson Kingdom Venturers

Horicon Marsh mid-morning ©Ann Johnson Kingdom Venturers

Horicon Marsh mid-morning
©Ann Johnson Kingdom Venturers

Horicon Marsh facing SW ©Ann Johnson Kingdom Venturers

Horicon Marsh facing SW
©Ann Johnson Kingdom Venturers

Horicon Marsh - photosynthetic algae ©Ann Johnson Kingdom Venturers

Horicon Marsh – photosynthetic algae
©Ann Johnson Kingdom Venturers

Horicon Marsh hiking trail ©Ann Johnson Kingdom Venturers

Horicon Marsh hiking trail
©Ann Johnson Kingdom Venturers

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For the Beauty of the Earth – John Rutter

For the Beauty of…Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving Day.  The eponym-iest day of the year for me. I have been brining in blessings all year.  It’s time to give thanks.

Of course, I love the smell of food that wafts into memories. I love seeing all my kids all at the same time. I love the murmur of kith and kin. And then I love to go back to bed and leave the dishes for the next day.

 Every year I wake up early in anticipation of the day’s preparation. This year was no different.  I woke at 3:00 am this morning: “There must be something I have to attend to,” I told myself under a warm and indifferent comforter.

 But beyond the expectancy of joy and beyond the fact that I will tell everyone my concerns about how the mashed potatoes will fare I do remember that the day is Thanksgiving Day and that I have plenty to give thanks for. PLENTY.

 We live in a world where everywhere I turn, it seems, there is a Scrooge~like spirit of ungratefulness ~ a blatant demand for one’s “fair share” and for one’s own painful memories to be performed “LIVE” over and over again.  This ungratefulness is put onto the front burner of one’s every thought, word and deed.  And, there it simmers and then smolders and then burns down into a burn~your~eyes~and~nose~charred~and~smoking bitterness. You don’t want to ingest ungratefulness no matter how it is cooked ~ rare, medium, well-done or burnt.

 Now, if I had to capture the essence of thanksgiving into words and let those words have a voice I would choose the hymn “For The Beauty of the Earth.”  This will be the hymn sung at my funeral, but I’m not waking up early for that.

   “For The Beauty of the Earth” captures only some of what I will say for eternity.