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Autumn revealed

Something to read

Happy are those who do not follow the advice of the wicked, or take the path that sinners tread, or sit in the seat of scoffers; but their delight is in the law of the Lord, and on his law they meditate day and night. They are like trees planted by streams of water, which yield their fruit in its season, and their leaves do not wither. In all that they do, they prosper

- Psalm 1:1-3 (from full reading Psalm 1).

Something to think about

This is a beautiful Psalm to meditate on as we move into this season of ‘mists and mellow fruitfulness’. The rich beauty of autumn is starting to be revealed - what have you noticed so far?

Across the country, the trees and crops thirsted for water during the hot months of May, June and July. Now they bear fruit, and we offer our thanks for a safe harvest. 

For the psalmist, that life-giving water is ‘the law of the Lord’. Can we share that delight? Can we drink from that life-giving water?

God’s law is characterised by righteousness and justice. To follow that law means to be in right relationship with God, with each other, and with our world. 

When those with power choose the path of selfishness and greed, those living in poverty are the ones to suffer. Streams of water run dry in a literal sense, and trees fail to yield their crops.

And yet it need not be that way. Poverty can end when the powerful embrace righteousness and justice, and delight in the law of the Lord.

Something to do

Read Matthew 7:13-20. Do you notice any parallels with Psalm 1?

Do you think Jesus may have had this Psalm in mind when he was teaching? With these two passages in mind, can you notice the good and bad ‘fruits’ of the choices you make?

Something to pray

Lord and giver of life, teach us to delight in your righteous law. Nourish us with your word, so that our lives may bear rich fruit. Give us the confidence and strength to speak out against injustice and to challenge the wickedness and sinful structures that bind so many in poverty. 

May your kingdom come,

Today’s contributor is Tim Burdon, Christian Aid’s Regional Coordinator for County Durham and Redcar and Cleveland at the time of writing.