In the Beginning...

There was beauty and majesty. It is still here, all around us.

The Scripture

Psalm 148
interpreted by Deborah, after Robert Alter

Hallelujah! Praise the Lord!
Praise the Lord from the heavens;
praise Him in the heights!
Praise Him, all His angelic messengers;
praise Him, all His heavenly armies!

Praise Him, sun and moon;
praise Him, all you stars of light!
Praise Him, you highest heavens,
and you waters above the heavens!
Let them praise the name of the Lord,
for He commanded and they were created.
He established them forever and ever;
He set limits, to keep them restrained.

Praise the Lord from the earth,
sea monsters and all you deeps,
fire and hail,
snow and fog,
stormy wind fulfilling His command!

Mountains and all hills,
fruit trees and all forests!
All animals, wild and domestic,
crawling things and flying birds!

Kings of the earth and all peoples,
princes and all rulers of the earth!
Young men and maidens alike,
old and young together!

Let them praise the name of the Lord,
for His name alone is exalted;
His grandeur is over earth
and the heavens.

God has raised a shout of victory
for His people,
praise for all His faithful;
the Israelites, and the people near Him.

Praise the Lord! Hallelujah!

Photo of a flower

A Prayer of Praise by Deborah Beach Giordano

Praise for the Gift of the Earth

Inspired by Psalm 148

A cloud-swirled marble
swathed in aquas,
grays, and indigos,
held tenderly
in place
within a universe
of endless possibility.

God spoke: Glorious.

The skylights of the heavens
clad in every color,
hue, and vibrancy,
tremble in awe above us,
gazing raptly
at our planet’s majesty.

God spoke: Magnificent.

Whale and walrus,
lobster, lamprey, and starfish,
seaweed, seal, and stingray,
shark, sardine, and octopus,
sea monsters
abiding in the waters.

God spoke: Astonishing.

Oceans, seas, and rivers,
streams, creeks, and arroyos,
wadis, wells, and water holes;
refresh, cleanse, and sustain.

God spoke: Life-Giving.

Wind, rain, and sleet,
snow, hail, and heat,
storms, fog, foul and fair weather;
wild ranging,
endlessly changing.

God spoke: Variety.

Mountains, hills, and valleys,
deserts, forests, and grasslands,
ice-crowned peaks, and night-dark caverns.
Goats and gulls, giraffes and grasshoppers,
butterflies and buttercups,
lizards and lilacs, lions and ladybugs,
penguins and panthers, camels and crows,
owls, ocelots, and ostriches,
apes and ants — and anteaters, too.

God spoke: Exaltation.

Earthly rulers, CEOs,
the rich, the powerful and the prideful,
presidents, politicians, and prime minsters,
bureaucrats, bankers, and board members,
your strength will one day fade,
your names forgotten,
your bodies turned to dust.

God spoke: I AM.

All people, join together:
the young, the old,
the weak, the strong,
the grieving and the joyful;
all people of every town and tribe,
of every age and station,
join together
and give thanks to the Lord.

Join me in praising the Lord our God;
join in, shouting Hallelujah!

God says, “Bring all who claim me as their God,
for I have made them for My glory.
It was I who created them.”
    ~ Isaiah 43:7

May joy and thanksgiving fill your heart!


Suggested Spiritual Exercise

Look up and down and around you — and give thanks.