by Karla Hein
I’ve been thinking about earthworms lately.
Particularly, I’ve wondered about the shock experienced by the earthworm that was stretched end to end by the inquisitive fingers of my five-year-old in our garden a few weeks ago. Or the one that was scooped from the familiarity of the strawberry patch by a red plastic shovel and abruptly expelled from the garden. Would it ever find its way back? Or did it even care, simply grateful that the sharp beak of a hungry robin hadn’t carried it away?
Summer must slow me down. As I bend down in the dirt to pull out the tenacious weeds, I now have time to speculate on a lowly earthworm’s emotional state.
It makes me wonder about King Solomon. What was he doing when he wrote about the ants? “Go to the ant, O sluggard, observe her ways and be wise!” (Proverbs 6:6). Was he watching them scurry along his palace floor? Was it perhaps a flashback to his younger days of poking open an ant hill?
Prior to the astounding response from the Creator himself, Job admonished his friends, “But now ask the beasts, and let them teach you; and the birds of the heavens, and let them tell you…Who among all these does not know that the hand of the Lord has done this, in whose hand is the life of every living thing, and the breath of all humankind?” (Job 12:7–12). The created world is designed to teach us about the Creator. It reveals “his invisible attributes, his eternal power and divine nature,” compelling us to acknowledge his majesty (Romans1:20–21).
Obviously, not everyone wants to submit to God’s rightful authority. “Why do the nations conspire and the peoples plot in vain? The kings of the earth rise up and the rulers band together against the Lord and against his anointed” (Psalm 2:1–2). Psalm 2 vividly describes God laughing at their defiant, scrawny fists raised against His Sovereign power. A solemn warning follows: “Serve the Lord with fear and celebrate his rule with trembling…or he will be angry” (vv. 11–12). In Romans 1, Paul states that “the wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of people” (v. 18). In “suppressing the truth by their wickedness,” people attempt to minimize the terrifying reality of God’s holiness.
Here’s the astonishing conclusion of Psalm 2: “His wrath can flare up in a moment. Blessed are all who take refuge in him” (v. 12, emphasis added). Take refuge in the God who laughs at rulers and promises vengeance on evildoers! Here is the astonishing beauty of Christ’s sacrifice: “Since we have now been justified by his blood, how much more shall we be saved from God’s wrath through him” (Romans 5:9).
As we spend time outside this summer, let’s meditate on the mysteries of our majestic Creator—his awesome wrath and incredible grace—as we observe the birds of the air, the lilies of the field, and the earthworms of the garden.